09/02/2001 11:00PM

Spa tops million for first time


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N .Y. - Saratoga's record-breaking 2001 season ended with total attendance for the meet topping one million for the first time in the 133-year history of the track.

Despite winning six races on the final day, John Velazquez came out three short in the race for the jockey title with Jerry Bailey capturing his third straight and seventh overall crown with 55 victories. Bill Mott won his eighth training title in the last 10 years, saddling 22 winners, the second-highest total in track history.

Monday's crowd of 27,654 pushed total attendance for the meet past 1,010,000, up more than 3 percent over last year.

The New York Racing Association's reduced takeout returned nearly an additional $7 million to the bettors.

Point Given turned in the outstanding performance of the meet, winning the Travers before a record crowd in what turned out to be his last race.

Trainer Bobby Frankel saddled 10 winners from only 21 starters including three Grade 1 and three Grade 2 victories. His Grade 1 wins were with Lido Palace in the Whitney, Squirtle Squirt in the King's Bishop, and Flute in the Alabama.

Trainer Jonathan Sheppard also turned in an unusual feat, winning a Grade 1 race over both the flats and jumps: With Anticipation won the Sword Dancer and It's a Giggle won the New York Turf Writers Cup Handicap.

Go to Saratoga coverage.