"Because of the weather and other factors, entertainment and tourism at the Jersey Shore saw significant declines," Kulina said. "So, we are pleased with our year-end numbers, comparatively."Joe Bravo, who missed the last two Monmouth meets due to injuries, was the leading rider. The owner-trainer tandem of Mike Gill and Mark Shuman took meet honors in their respective divisions.
The extended Monmouth Park meet ended Sunday, with the New Jersey track reporting average daily attendance of 8,758 and average daily on-track wagering of $673,199 for the 92-day stand.The core of the meet -- the 72 days of live racing from Memorial Day through Labor Day that paralleled the traditional meet dates – resulted in average daily attendance of 9,803, down only slightly from the daily average 9,826 for the comparable period in 2002. Total average daily on-track handle of $1,436,366 during the core dates represented a 2% decline and total all-source handle averaged $4,026,210, down 2.5%.Bob Kulina, vice president of Thoroughbred racing and Monmouth Park general manager for the New Jersey Sports and Exhibition Authority, attributed the declines partially to inclement weather on the Jersey Shore this summer.