08/12/2014 11:38AM

Ontrack business up at Saratoga; all-sources handle down


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Just past the halfway point of the 2014 Saratoga meet, ontrack business is strong, while all-sources handle is down compared with the same period last year.

After 22 days of racing, ontrack handle on Saratoga’s races is $77,598,764, a 2.2 percent increase over the $75,874,209 wagered ontrack through the same period last summer.

All-sources handle, however, is $297,695,784, down 4.9 percent compared with $313,233,276 wagered through the first 22 days last year.

Saratoga has conducted 222 races this year, compared with 228 at this point in 2013. Of those 222 races, 101 have been run on turf – including six steeplechase races – with 15 having been taken off the turf. Last year at this point, 115 races had been run on turf – four of which were steeplechase events – with only eight having been taken off the turf.

Reported attendance at Saratoga is 512,719, a 13.9 percent increase over last year’s figure of 450,009 through 22 cards. This year, the New York Racing Association is not counting spinners – those who pay more than one admission price for multiple giveaway items – in its attendance but is counting approximately 6,400 season passes whether those pass holders attend the races or not.

Saratoga has held three of its four scheduled giveaways so far – the next one is not scheduled until Aug. 31. Last year, Saratoga held two giveaways at this point in the meet.

Saratoga’s 40-day meet runs through Sept. 1.