Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators Upbeat

SARATOGA MEET HELPS BOOST AUGUST ECONOMIC INDICATORS BY DOUBLE DIGITS

By David Hooper, Director, Texas Thoroughbred Association

AUSTIN, (TTA) – Equibase News Service reported double-digit increases in wagering and purses for the month of August compared with 2011 and a 9.3% increase in racing days for the eighth racing month of the year.

The increases in wagering and purses were due in large part to the 2012 Saratoga race meet, which offered record purses, thanks to the new revenue stream from the World Resorts Casino at Aqueduct, and 417 races run at the Spa in 40 days, compared with the 398 run in 2011 in 39 days after one cancellation. Saratoga’s daily all-sources handle averaged $14,708,799, up 9% over 2011.

The popular Del Mar meet also helped boost national statistics as its $687,755 average daily purses, an increase of 23.6% over 2011 for the 37-day meet, and increased field size from 8.4 to 8.7 runners per race, contributed to an 8.8% jump in all-sources handle to $468,093,477.

Nationwide, Equibase News Service reported $1,096,240,662 wagered on U.S. races in August, an 11.64% increase over 2011, with purses jumping 21.44% from $96,430,436 in 2011 to $117,103,024 this year. The number of race days grew from 527 in 2011 to 576 in 2012.