06/02/2017 10:04AM

Churchill Downs boosts purses for end of spring meet

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. – An across-the-board 10 percent increase in purses for the final 14 days of the spring meet at Churchill Downs will take effect Thursday, track officials have announced.

Purses for a 38-day meet that began April 29 and ends June 30 are projected to total $12.7 million, up from the original $12.3 million budgeted, according to a media release issued Friday. The increase is attributable to record all-sources handle during Kentucky Derby week, when $285.1 million was wagered over a six-day period, up 7 percent from the corresponding 2016 dates.

All races are affected except for the nine six-figure stakes that remain.

In all, overnight purses at the meet are expected to average $335,000 per day, a figure that grows to $568,000 when stakes purses are included.