07/22/2014 9:09AM

Saratoga ontrack handle, attendance up for opening week


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Ontrack business was up while overall handle was flat through the first four days of the 2014 Saratoga meet when compared to the same period last year.

Blessed by good weather and buoyed by the first giveaway day of the year on Sunday, total attendance through the first four days was 83,217, an 18.2 percent increase over last year’s figure of 70,390. There was no giveaway on the first Sunday of last year’s meet.

This year’s attendance on giveaway Sundays will be reported differently from past years. A new system that will not count “spinners” - people who buy more than one admission for the purpose of acquiring multiple giveaway items - has been put in place.

Meanwhile, ontrack handle was $14,776,040, an 8.8 percent increase over last year’s figure of $13,583,284. Factored into ontrack handle is money wagered at Aqueduct and Belmont, where Saratoga’s races are simulcast.

All-sources handle through the first four days was $61,376,762, down less than 1 percent from last year’s total of $61,799,199. All sources handle had been up through the first three days, but was down almost $1.4 million on Monday’s nine-race card.

There were 41 races run through the first four days of the meet, the same number as last year. There were 22 turf races, one more than last year’s opening week.

For the first time, Saratoga offered a pick-five wager on the first five races on the card, which through the first four days of the meet averaged $341,666 in handle.

After a dark day Tuesday, racing is scheduled to resume at Saratoga on Wednesday with a 10-race card, including a steeplechase race that will be run at 12:25 p.m. The steeplechase race will not be part of the pick five, which begins with race 2 and goes to post at 1 p.m. The same schedule will be in place Wednesdays and Thursdays throughout the meet.

Shawn Britton More than 1 year ago
Saratoga= horse racing sacred ground. Show respect
1971 Whippet More than 1 year ago
As tough as it is to accumulate casino points, I wouldn't use them for the DRF anymore. Use cash? Unlikely No value. DRF+. Last dance for another dinosaur.
John Tardiff More than 1 year ago
Removed the Bookmark for this site, greedy DRF has pushed too far.
ad More than 1 year ago
last yr I bot the workout reports.....I have complained for the last yr about the pop up and pop downs,,,now everything is drf plus...pay pay pay....made a site less competitive in a more competitive marketplace....fools
ad More than 1 year ago
garbage wesite
Michael Jacob More than 1 year ago
I remember about 20 years ago they were selling 12 dollar hamburgers in the back yard. They must be like 36 dollars by now.
gary Potter More than 1 year ago
Michael, You're an idiot, they have never sold $12 burgers and still don't. If you had half a brain you would know they also allow you to bring food and drink into the track.
James Farrell More than 1 year ago
Don't give the counterperson a $6+ tip because that is the only way you paid for a $12 hamburger this year and any other year. If you got a problem with the prices bring a cooler with your own food and drinks, even alcoholic drinks but after your comment, I don't think you need any of those. You should have your head checked because what you remember was most likely a dream, lol
hialeah More than 1 year ago
There you go with all your complanin' and we're not even started yet! Odds, sods and knobs - three for a fiver outside the gate, and a bargain at that. No?
mikey More than 1 year ago
Maybe the only race track in the us where you park in someone's backyard.You will walk in mud or dirt allmost where you park.Between the high prices and watching a race on a beech chair why go.
Peter Siipola More than 1 year ago
that's your choice -- high prices?? -- what does it cost to park and get a seat at an NFL game? -- to watch millionaires play???
billybudd16 More than 1 year ago
850,000 people say you're wrong.
ted More than 1 year ago
I not familiar with any other sports venue where you can sit outside underneath a huge shade tree on your BEACH chair (with a beverage you can bring into the track) and watch the thoroughbreds run for what is the admission? $5!!! Are you kidding? I guess that adage "there is no such as reality, only perception" applies here!
Ashley Herriman More than 1 year ago
Mikey, I suggest you find a badminton match where you can park and enjoy the dynamic play. Anyone that wrote what you did should never go to a horse race.
gary Potter More than 1 year ago
Mikey, PLEASE don't go.
martymar . More than 1 year ago
oh wow a free article
Peter Siipola More than 1 year ago
charts are free-----used to have to buy the form to get them----remember?