10/29/2002 12:00AM

Keeneland soars, Retama dips


The Keeneland Race Course record for all-sources handle was broken at the 17-day fall meet that ended Saturday at the Lexington, Ky., track.

More than $111 million was bet on Keeneland racing during the meet, surpassing by more than $7 million the record set at the 2000 fall meet. The average all-sources handle of $6,540,052 narrowly topped the former record, also set in 2000, showing an increase of 16 percent over corresponding figures for 2001, when some major outlets did not take Keeneland simulcasts for the entire meet.

Ontrack, attendance averaged 12,451, up 2 percent from last year, while ontrack handle, which accounts for ontrack wagering on imported simulcast races, averaged just under $1.5 million, down 1.4 percent from last year. Per-day purses averaged $601,886.

Pat Day won his 20th Keeneland riding title with 24 winners, and for the second straight fall Dale Romans was the leading trainer. He won eight races, two more than Carl Nafzger and Nick Zito.

* Retama Park near San Antonio had declines in attendance and handle for its 51-night meet that closed Saturday.

Attendance averaged 2,276 a night, down more than 28 percent from last year's 3,192. Handle on the track's live races averaged $1,166,781 a card, down 3 percent from $1,207,880 in 2001.

Danny Pish won 46 races to lock up his fourth straight training title at the track. The leading jockey was Roman Chapa, who won his fourth title at the track, winning 72 races.

- additional reporting by Mary Rampellini