Mixed Results for Hoosier Park Meet

Hoosier Park reported mixed results for its 70-day meet that ended Dec. 3. Because the Indiana racetrack is owned by Churchill Downs Inc. and is part of the company's simulcast network, total handle increase 6% to a record $83,850,669. The all-sources handle for the meet exceeded last year's total handle by more than $10 million.

"That is an indication of a quality race meet and the significant impact that being a part of CDSN (Churchill Downs Simulcasting Network) has on our operations," said Rick Moore, Hoosier Park president and general manager.

On-track numbers were not as rosy. The average daily on-track handle fell 8.6% to $96,246, down from an average $104,559 in 2000. Average daily attendance dropped 21% to 954, down from 1,206 a year ago.

Moore said the on-track declines were consistent with the on-track performances at other racetracks operating after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the United States. He also attributed the weakness to the immaturity of the Indiana market. Hoosier Park just completed its seventh season of Thoroughbred racing.

Other declines included a decrease in average daily purses to $168,168, down from $172,436 last year. Average starters per race also dropped slightly to 8.88, down from 8.98 during the 2000 meet.