Hastings Race Course

Hastings Race Course

Four Footed Fotos

Hastings Posts Gains in Handle, Purses

Vancouver track received boost by being home base for jockey Mario Gutierrez.

Hastings Race Course in Vancouver, British Columbia, posted increases in on-track and all-source handle and purses for the 67-day meet that ended Oct. 14.

The Canadian track reported total handle of Can$32,557,605, up 5% from the $30,888,829 wagered during the 69-day meet in 2011. Total on-track wagering of $9,848,829 was up slightly from the $9,843,196 figure a year ago.

Average daily all-source handle rose 9% to $485,934 from a daily average $447,664 in 2011. Hastings reported average daily purses of $145,693, a 12% increase over the $130,435 average last year.

"Our goal at the start of the year was to continue growth in our numbers, provide a great experience for our guests and continue to be a top entertainment destination in Vancouver," general manager Raj Mutti said. "We successfully accomplished all of those goals and look forward to carrying the momentum into the 2013 season."

Although Hastings does not maintain attendance figures, Mutti said it was obvious more people attended the races this year, thanks in part to the boost in interest in its racing program by being the base for jockey Mario Gutierrez. Gutierrez gained national prominence when he guided I'll Have Another  to victories in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and Preakness Stakes (gr. I).

Mutti said "Mario Mania" was "one of the most exciting times in most of our professional careers."

Hastings also benefitted from attracting a younger demographic fan base and from "great summer weather," Mutti said.

Amadeo Perez was the meet's leading jockey with 95 wins, and Troy Taylor won his sixth consecutive leading trainer title with 40 wins. Glen Todd was leading owner for a sixth straight year as well.