Turfway Handle Off 12%; Total Purses Down 8%

A severe winter storm that left much of Kentucky paralyzed earlier this year helped lead to sharp declines in the Turfway Park winter meeting that ended April 3.

Turfway, which lost 15 full or partial live cards due to inclement weather in Northern Kentucky, reported total handle of $197,517,080, down 12% from last year's total of $224,483,000. Average daily handle from all sources was $3,361,516, a decrease of just 0.1%.

Total on-track handle dropped 12.6% to $22,258,228. Average daily on-track handle was $337,305, a decrease of 6.4% from last year's average of $360,404.

Turfway ran 61 live programs in 2001-02 and only 50 this year.

The lone bright spot for Turfway was the increase in average daily handle from out-of-state simulcasting facilities. That number increased 9.3% to $1,939,630.

Turfway gave out $8,840,445 in purse money, which was an 8.2% decrease from last year's total of $9,626,415. The lost days led to a 12% increase in average daily purse distribution to $176,809 from $157,810.