Retama Park posted impressive increases in gross handle and attendance for the 2012 live Thoroughbred meet.
The Selma, Texas track reported that total on-track handle for the 26-day meet that ended Dec. 29 was up a healthy 22% over a 2011 stand that ran for 23 days. Export handle, money wagered at off-track locations on Retama Park races, jumped a huge 49%. Live handle at Retama was up 6% with live attendance showing a 2% increase.
More than $7.5 million was wagered on-track during the recently completed meet compared to just under $6.2 million in 2011. The export handle totaled $13.1 million this year compared to last year's total of $8.8 million. Live handle at Retama was $2,184,951, which bettered last year's figure of $2,061,833.
Total attendance was 55,863, up slightly over last year's 54,698.
Purse payouts soared to the highest level since the track's opening season in 1995. An average daily total of $109,000 went to the track's horsemen.
"It was great for our owners and trainers to see purses climb past the $100,000 level", said James Leatherman, Retama Park's racing secretary. "It gives us all a positive attitude as we prepare for 2013."
The 2013 Thoroughbred meet is to run Oct. 4 to Dec. 28.