10/19/2010 3:12PM

Keeneland ontrack figures up over last year

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Ontrack business so far at the fall meet at Keeneland is up substantially while all-sources handle is virtually even with last year, according to figures released Tuesday by officials at the Lexington, Ky., track.

Through Sunday, and after eight of 17 programs, ontrack attendance was up 28 percent over corresponding 2009 fall dates, while ontrack handle was up 10 percent. The running totals to date were 124,870 in attendance and $11.6 million in handle, which includes imported simulcast wagering.

All-sources handle is a different story, as $64.9 million has been bet thus far, down less than 1 percent from last year.

Business at tracks virtually everywhere in North America has undergone negative trends for the last two years, so Keeneland officials are encouraged by the early returns at their meet. Track president Nick Nicholson said in a media release that the strong handle was reflective of “full fields of top-quality horses” and that “it’s been a classic Keeneland fall meet so far.”