World Thoroughbred Championships at Arlington Park totaled $116,367,198, establishing an all-time record Breeders' Cup handle. These figures do not include approximately $400,000 in wagers from Italy and other foreign countries that are still to be tabulated.
The 2002 total handle breaks the old Breeders' Cup mark of $108,603,040 set at Churchill Downs in 2000. Saturday's grand total also was 11.7% higher than last year's Breeders' Cup wagering of $104,145,186. Simulcast wagering on the day increased by nearly 13% from 2001, as $102,798,989 was wagered at off-track outlets worldwide. Total wagering on just the eight Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships races was $108,885,673.
"Our fans responded positively to this year's Breeders' Cup, as evidenced by the resumption of growth in our off-track handle and an 18% increase in our television ratings," said D.G. Van Clief, Jr., Breeders' Cup president and National Thoroughbred Racing Association vice chairman "We are grateful to the staff and management of NBC, Arlington Park and the 9,400 wagering facilities around the world that took the Breeders' Cup simulcast, who did a magnificent job of working with the NTRA/Breeders' Cup team to make this event a success."
Illinois led the way among wagering by individual states with $17,934,978, including the on-track handle at Arlington Park. New York led all simulcast jurisdictions with $13,447,398 wagered on the 11-race card. Following New York was California with $12,822,242, Nevada with $6,314,843, Pennsylvania with $5,437,752, Florida with $5,280,406, New Jersey with $4,723,490, Kentucky with $4,530,828 and Canada with $4,307,553.
Among overseas wagering outlets, a total of $2,574,656 was wagered in France, an increase of nearly 18 percent over last year.
On track at Arlington Park, the sell-out crowd of 46,118 wagered $13,568,233 on the 11-race program.