11/03/2008 1:00AM

Hastings handle remains steady

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Live handle from all sources at Hastings in 2008 was almost identical to 2007. Total live handle this year was $49,716,774 compared with $49,724,506 in 2007.

There were three more days in 2008, which corresponds to a 4 percent drop in the daily average. The average daily handle in 2008 was $700,236 compared with $731,242 a year ago.

Ontrack business was off 7 percent, $16,647,925 compared with $17,893,203. The daily average of $234,479 was down 11 percent.

The daily purse distribution went up 20 percent from $92,234 in 2007 to $110,818 in 2008.

Mario Gutierrez repeated as the leading jockey with 103 wins. Stephanie Fedora was the leading apprentice with 40 wins.

Troy Taylor led the trainer standings for the second year in a row with 53 wins.

Hastings announced that the 2009 live season would open on April 18.