Arlington's Wagering, Attendance Gain; Breeders' Cup Effect Cited

Arlington's Wagering, Attendance Gain; Breeders' Cup Effect Cited
Photo:
Edited release from Arlington Park
The 107-day 2002 Arlington Park race meet that concluded Sunday posted a 14.3% increase in total average daily wagering and a 4.8% gain in on-track attendance.

These averages are for 106 days and do not include the Oct. 26 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championship attendance of 46,118, on-track and total handles of $13,568,209 and $115,523,156, respectively.

"The increases in both the attendance and handle can be mostly credited to the increased awareness about Arlington Park that resulted from our first opportunity to host the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships," stated Arlington Park President Steve Sexton. "In addition, a more aggressive marketing campaign led to a higher attendance on track, while a more extensive exotic wagering menu combined with additional awareness due to the Breeders' Cup attracted more dollars from out of state."

Arlington Park's 106-day (no Breeders' Cup) total handle from all sources was $414,442,101, an average of $3,909,831 per day, which represents a 14.3% increase from the 2001 average of $3,420,430 ($345,463,483 total). On-track $61,276,349 was wagered overall, for a daily average of $578,079, a 2.8% increase from last year's $562,421 average ($56,804,502 total).

The total 106-day attendance for the 2002 meet was 666,834, more than 60,000 higher than last year's 606,233. The daily average of 6,291 represents a 4.8% increase from the 2001 average of 6,002.

Following are the 2002 meet totals for 107 days including the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships:

On-Track Handle: $74,844,558
Total Handle - All Sources: $522,955,208

Attendance: 712,952

During the meet, Frank C. Calabrese established a new single-season record of 66 victories while earning his third consecutive title as the meet's leading owner, 50 wins better than runner-up Team Block.

Wayne Catalano, private trainer for Calabrese and the 2000 titlist, captured 64 races (two of Calabrese's victors were trained by others) to establish a new single-season standard for wins at Arlington. Jerry Hollendorfer, last year's champion, was second with 39 tallies.

The previous mark for both owner and trainer was 62 was set by Irish Acres Farm and Noel Hickey in 1991.

Jockey Rene Douglas successfully defended his 2001 riding title with 167 trips to the winner's circle.

Most Popular Stories