Updated on 07/25/2012 5:36PM

Saratoga business up markedly in first week

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Blessed by tremendous weather and, for the most part, large fields, Saratoga enjoyed increases in handle and attendance through the first week of the meet, compared to 2011.

Ontrack handle for the first four days was $12,731,605, up 14.2 percent from the $11,146,737 wagered last year.

All-sources handle, which includes wagers on Saratoga both ontrack and from simulcast outlets, was $63,688,669, up 12.3 percent from $56,688,557 last year.

Though Saratoga appeared empty on Monday, the crowd of 9,320 was 18 percent higher than last year’s crowd of 7,838. Thus, Saratoga’s attendance through the first four days was 75,369, a 2 percent increase from last year’s figure of 73,875.

This meet began with 41 races with an average field size of nine horses, compared to 40 races and an average field size of 8.4 in 2011. There have been 22 turf races run at Saratoga this year, compared to 16 through the first four days last year.

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