03/14/2007 12:00AM

Fair Grounds again raises purse values


Fair Grounds on Wednesday announced the third purse increase of its ongoing meet, and beginning Thursday will add $12,000 to every non-stakes race during the remainder of the season.

The track, thanks to a fat purse account entering the 2006-2007 season, plus steady business on its live product, and at offtrack betting and video poker parlors, is offering the best purse structure ever in Louisiana.

Excluding Saturday, a five-stakes day, last week's average daily purse distribution was $335,250, with a high of $388,250 on Sunday. Factor in the purse increase, and a card like Sunday's would be worth about $500,000. Louisiana-bred maiden special weights will go for $61,000, and $5,000 claimers will run for $31,500.