Breeders' Cup Boosts November Purses, Handle

Total purses down 5.8% during first 11 months.

The Nov. 6-7 Breeders’ Cup World Championships during the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meet provided a major shot in the arm for November purses, which were up 24.9% over the same month a year ago when the Breeders’ Cup was held in October.

According to the monthly Thoroughbred racing economic indicators released by Equibase Company, the $26,150,200 total Breeders’ Cup purses boosted the monthly purse total to $104.3 million, compared with $83.5 million during November 2008. For the first 11 months of the year, purses fell 5.8% to $1.035 billion from the $1.098 billion figure through the same period one year ago.

The $144.6 million wagered on the Breeders’ Cup races helped overall wagering for the month. Worldwide commingled wagering on U.S. races in November totaled $975.7 million, up less than 1% over the November 2008 figure of $969 million. Overall wagering was down 10% for the first 11 months, from $12.8 billion to $11.6 billion.

According to Equibase, the number of race days in November was down 11.6% to 411; for all of 2009, the 5,602 race days represents a 2.8% decline from the 5,763 race days in 2008.