11/02/2005 1:00AM

Zia Park track report


Zia has passed the halfway point of its inaugural season, and handle on its mixed cards of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse races has averaged about $234,000 a day, according to officials at the Hobbs, N.M., track. Purses to date have averaged $167,000 a program, a figure that does not include the $1.2 million that will be distributed Sunday during the track's New Mexico Cup.

Zia officials look for offsite betting on the track's races to increase in the next few weeks with the addition of some new outlets like Nassau and Suffolk County OTBs in New York, said Phil Ziegler, Zia's marketing director.

The track opened its inaugural meet Sept. 23. First post will be moved up from 12:30 p.m. to noon Mountain time beginning Sunday.