09/27/2017 12:20PM

Strong opening weekend for Monmouth-at-Meadowlands meet

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The Monmouth-at-Meadowlands all-turf meet had strong handle on its opening weekend and was up 29.4 percent from a year ago.

Opening-night handle on Friday was $1.32 million, up 40.8 percent from the $938,196 wagered in 2016. The Friday handle was up 26.8 percent from opening night in 2015 and 58 percent from 2014.

Weather was ideal over the weekend and the turf was firm. In 2014 and 2016, the turf also was firm on opening night. In 2015, it was yielding. Six-horse fields have long been the standard at the meet.

An additional $1.21 million was bet Saturday night, an increase of 18.8 percent from a year ago.

The feature race Friday is a first-level optional-claiming race for fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles. The purse is $30,000.