Penn National Gaming Reports July Handle Gain

Figures for company's mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred tracks continue positive growth.

Wagering at Penn National Gaming’s Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred tracks continued to show encouraging signs of growth in July, with both Penn National Race Course and Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races reporting an increase in average daily all-sources handle in both the prior month and the year to date.

For its 17 live days in July 2012, Penn National’s all-sources handle rose to $1,017,364 per program, a sizable increase of 26% over the same month in 2011. Charles Town’s average full-card figure of $852,626 outpaced 2011 by 7%. 

Highlighting those increases was the 30% gain in average daily export handle experienced by Penn National versus 2011, and Charles Town’s three-year growth trend in July, which shows a 29% increase in the month since 2009. Field size at both tracks in July averaged more than 8 runners per race, with Charles Town posting an average field size of 8.52 and Penn National’s checking in at 8.23.

Recently, it’s been the racing events staged at both properties that have served as catalysts for the growth.  Earlier in 2012, the Charles Town Classic program produced a new single card handle mark for the West Virginia track of $3,441,632, shattering the previous high by 33%. Similarly, July’s handle success at Penn National was buoyed by Pennsylvania Governor’s Cup day on July 28, when the event generated wagering of $1,359,858, a spike of 29% over its 2011 counterpart.

“We’re continuing to build the brand of racing at Penn National Gaming through a series of high profile events that fans both locally and around the country can identify with and become enthusiastic about,” said Chris McErlean, vice president of racing for Penn National Gaming. “The handle numbers at both Penn National and Charles Town are an encouraging sign that we’re reaching more customers.”

The year-to-date numbers for 2012 show the average daily handle at Penn National of $1,022,715 represents a 16% increase over the same period in 2011. Of the past 68 live days run at Penn National, 65 of them have produced a larger all-sources handle than the corresponding live day on the 2011 calendar.

Through the first seven months of 2012, average all-sources handle at Charles Town has grown to $1,082,020, 7% more than the same period in 2011 produced. Year-over-year average daily all-sources handle at Charles Town has now risen in 25 of the previous 27 months.

Live racing at Charles Town in August will be conducted Thursday through Saturday with a 7:15 p.m. EDT post time and on Sundays with a start time of 1 p.m.  In addition to Penn National’s Wednesday through Saturday schedule in August, an additional race day will be held on Monday, Aug. 6. Post time for the first race with all Penn National cards in August is 6 p.m.