Charles Town Reports 8.1% Jump in 2010 Handle

Average daily betting on live races at West Virginia track increased 10.1% over 2009.

Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races reported gains in total pari-mutuel handle for its 2010 meet, which spanned 227 full programs and four partial cards through Dec. 31.

Officials at the West Virginia racetrack said all-sources handle for Charles Town racing totaled $193,261,857, up 8.1% from 2009, when five more race days were held. Average daily handle on live racing was up 10.1%, while average daily export handle rose 11.8%, officials said.

Charles Town, which has full-scale casino gambling that produces revenue for purses and breed development, paid $38.8 million in purses in 2010, according to The Jockey Club Information Systems. Average daily purses totaled $168,155, down from $181,934 in 2009. Total purses declined more than $4 million year to year, according to the TJCIS statistics.

The $1 million Charles Town Classic program in April produced a single-program record handle of $2,584,876. Handle on the Classic itself was $648,005, a new single-race record for Charles Town.

The 2011 Classic, set for April 16, will carry grade III status in only its third year.

The $1.3 million West Virginia Breeders Classics program in October also set a handle record with $1,526,419 wagered, up 27% from the previous high.

Jeff Runco won the training title for the fifth straight year, while J.D. Acosta was leading jockey for the third straight year.

Charles Town kicks off its 2011 meet Jan. 4 with racing on a Tuesday-through-Saturday schedule with first post time at 7:15 p.m. EST.