09/26/2004 11:00PM

Prairie Meadows handle drops


ALTOONA, Iowa - Prairie Meadows concluded its 47-day mixed meeting Saturday with declines in handle.

Total average daily handle from all sources was $448,085, down 16 percent from the $534,284 per day at 2003's 48-day mixed meeting. Ontrack handle averaged $57,976 this meeting, down 13 percent from last year.

Prairie Meadows had across-the-board gains in handle during its Thoroughbred meeting, which concluded in July. Both sets of figures can be partially explained by this year's racing schedule, in which the track's biggest races were all run during the Thoroughbred meeting. That schedule followed a one-year experiment in 2003, when the track ran many big stakes events, including the Grade 3 Cornhusker Breeders' Cup Handicap, during the mixed meeting.

Jockey Tim Doocy overcame a large early deficit to defeat five-time defending champion Glenn Corbett by a 54-49 margin. Doocy, a more than 20-year veteran on the Midwest circuit, also captured the title during the Thoroughbred meeting here in his first year riding in Iowa on a regular basis.

Dick Clark, the all-time leading trainer at Prairie Meadows, easily captured another title by a 43-26 margin over Tim Gleason. Clark, who scored his 1,000th career win earlier in the summer, was inducted into the Prairie Meadows Hall of Fame in August.