Business Spikes at Arlington Park for Opening Weekend

Attendance, wagering, and field size all increased dramatically during Arlington Park's opening weekend compared with numbers from 2006.

Arlington reported total handle improved by more than 25% May 4-6, from $10,331,614 during last year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) weekend to $13,150,072 this year. On-track handle, fueled in part by an increase from 27 races last year to 32 this year, increased from $1,488,378 to $2,361,210.

Arlington reported three-day attendance of 41,005, up from 31,114 a year ago, and an increase in average field size from 7.11 horses per race to 8.84. The three-day opening weekend was blessed with generally good weather and a substantial boost in publicity resulting from the installation of Polytrack, the artificial racing surface.