Updated on 01/31/2017 1:20PM

Total handle for Pegasus World Cup was $15.68 million


Total handle on the $12 million Pegasus World Cup on Saturday at Gulfstream Park in Florida was $15.68 million when including all multi-race wagers that ended with this race, according to Equibase's official chart.

The handle figure far exceeds the $3.1 million bet on last year’s Donn Handicap, a longtime Gulfstream wintertime stakes race that was canceled this year because its conditions resembled those of the Pegasus. But the handle was also well below that of the $28.2 million bet on the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic, which, like the Pegasus, also featured California Chrome and Arrogate.

Total betting in the win pool was $4.7 million, according to the chart, compared with $7.7 million in the Breeders’ Cup Classic last year and $866,710 in the Donn Handicap last year.

Handle on a late pick four ending in the Pegasus with a $1 million guaranteed pool was $2.02 million. A pick five ending in the Pegasus had a handle of $1.1 million.

Gulfstream said in a release that all-sources handle on the entire 12-race card on Saturday was $40.2 million, a record for a single program at the track. The previous record was set on a 14-race card on Florida Derby day last year, when bettors wagered $32.1 million on the program, Gulfstream said.

On Sunday, NBC said the 90-minute broadcast of the race appearing on the network from 4:30-6 peaked at a 1.23 overnight rating, which exceeded the overnight rating for the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic. While the rating did not approach the figures for Triple Crown races, it was the highest for a non-Triple Crown race since the 2015 Classic, which featured Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, NBC said.

The Stronach Group purchased the broadcast window from NBC and had a heavy role in aspects of its production, which contained promotional spots featuring the comedian Jon Lovitz and Conor McGregor of the Ultimate Fighting Championship league.

Under the Pegasus conditions, the 12 entities that each bought a $1 million starting slot will share in some of the revenue from the handle. The percentage that the slot holders are entitled to has not been made public, and officials of The Stronach Group, the owner of Gulfstream, have not responded to inquiries from Daily Racing Form seeking information on the rate.

The Stronach Group renegotiated many of its simulcast contracts to get betting outlets to pay a higher rate for the Pegasus, according to simulcast officials.

Generally, racing officials estimate that a racetrack retains approximately 5 percent of all money bet on a race. Applying that to the Pegasus betting total, including all multi-race wagers ending in the race, Gulfstream retained approximately $784,000 from the race. Split 12 ways, that amounts to approximately $65,000 a share.

The Pegasus was won by Arrogate, a Juddmonte horse who started in a slot bought by the international racing and breeding operation Coolmore. The first-place purse was $7 million.

Second place, worth $1.75 million, went to Shaman Ghost, who is owned by Frank Stronach, the owner of Gulfstream and The Stronach Group. Third place, with a purse of $1 million, went to Neolithic, who is owned by Starlight Racing, the racing partnership headed by Jack Wolf, who was hired by Stronach to manage aspects of the Pegasus.

Prior to the race, The Stronach Group said it planned to sell approximately 12,000 tickets to Gulfstream on the day of the Pegasus, with prices starting at $100 and rising to a top price of $765.



Jack Armstead 10 months ago
Baffert/Juddmonte, Jerkens/Stronach, Pletcher/Jack Wolf of Starlight Racing, & Pletcher/Frankel Bro's & Calumet... what powerful connections.  

The Jockey order was Mike Smith, Jose Ortiz, John Velasquez, & Javier Castellano. 

Now that wouldn't have been difficult to "play jockeys" in this race. If I'd have just singled Arrogate (and added Victor/Chrome), it wouldn't have cost much($24) to play a straight Super that yielded a fair amount of money (approx. $460.00), or $2.40 for $46.00... a great ROI.

I wish life could be that simple.
Gabe Payan 10 months ago
At 12000 in Attendence with Avg $ 400 per ticket  equals 4.8K divided by 12 is  400,000 per owner, plus 250,000, plus handle 65,000, plus % TV money to be announced .  Not a bad investment after all !!!
Luc Paiement 10 months ago
Gulfstream Park did a great job on all counts ! The guts to launch the Pegasus Cup, the creation of an electrifying afternoon, a great client experience. The closeness to the action makes it more fun. Even great  weather was on hand. All that to see the retirement of a great horse and a great race from the new star. And it seems that right before the Pegasus Cup 12 th race  Gulfstream's opened the gate to the crowd that was still in line to get in. Congratulations to the Stronach.
robfla714 10 months ago
I paid $100 to get in and it was worth every penny. The whole experience was planned extremely well  and organized well by Gulfstream management. There was an electric feel for the whole day -   A Kentucky Derby type of feel to it.  
Richard Gerbig 10 months ago
$100 as a base rate to enter the track to watch the card live? This was NOT the Kentucky Derby, America's biggest race ran each Spring on the first Saturday in May. Sure, the purse was bigger, however it needs to draw the stars of racing each year to ensure that it isn't just a grade one with no star power. Arrogate vs Chrome was a good start, keep it up. 
Scott Samuel 10 months ago
To all of you haters,

  I was there.  While there could have been some improvements, such as the food, it was run in a very proficient manner and it was truly electrifying when Arrogate came into the paddock.  He looked like a horse who would destroy the field.  None of the other horses, by appearance alone, looked like he did.  That said, it was a great event and it is good for horse racing.  Kudos to Baffert for his training job and to Mike Smith for his ride.  Chrome should have been retired before this and he looked like a tired old horse in the paddock.  Glad he will finally get to go to stud.
robfla714 10 months ago
Fully agree. 
John Stevelberg 10 months ago
They need to do a little tinkering, but all in all it was a wonderful effort/
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Jack Armstead 10 months ago
GFY... troll. Why do you people do this?  Have you no shame or brains?
glyde69 10 months ago
Let's see. You just ran second place in a 12 million dollar race. 

1.75 million +60k for profit sharing. 1.81 made. After taxes it's about 1.05 million. Minus the buy in. 

The second place finisher in a 12 million dollar race brought home DRUM ROLL 50k. 
datdudeBPM 10 months ago
Yeah, that's not how taxes work. 
glyde69 10 months ago
Hey but at least 9 of the 12 owners who made this happen only LOST 600k each. Haha imagine that. Go into a race and lose 600k in purses!!! 

At least they got 8% of the handle which was gonna be record breaking.......oh wait, it was just a fraction above a normal Florida derby day, a day that doesn't have 13 million in purses.