Wagering on United States Thoroughbred racing in the first four months of the year declined 9.5%, according to Equibase's "Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators" released May 4.
Total wagering from all sources on the 13-race Kentucky Derby card May 2 at Churchill Downs was $155,969,770, a decline of 5.3% from the $164,668,176 wagered a year earlier on 12 races, the track has reported.
The Lexington track attracted near-record crowds but the all-sources handle still fell 19.5%. The on-track handle fared a bit better.
Good weather and a five-day race week were credited for a 3.69% rise in the all-sources handle at Gulfstream Park.
All-sources handle for the recently-concluded Laurel Park winter-spring meet fell 25.5%, Maryland Jockey Club officials have reported.
Oaklawn Park realized an increase in handle and attendance during its 54-day meet that ended April 11, according to a published report.
Wagering continued its decline in 2009 in a year-over-year comparison, falling 9.4% through March, according to data released April 3 by Equibase.
- By Ryan Conley
Even though TVG, TwinsSpires.com, and XpressBet.com enjoyed handle growth in 2008, total wagers processed by advance deposit wagering entities through hubs in Oregon decreased for the first time this decade, though the numbers are skewed by actions related to another member of the "Big Four," Youbet.com.
Philadelphia Park has been asked to cease handling account wagers on racing affiliated with TrackNet Media Group unless the Pennsylvania track signs a new licensing agreement with the content group.
Churchill Downs has seen some weakness in ticket sales for its annual Derby-Oaks weekend extravaganza, but feels there is enough interest in the events to produce another strong showing for the racetrack company.
Youbet.com reported a loss of $4.5 million for 2008, fueled by an $11.2 million fourth-quarter impairment charge for subsidiary United Tote, the company reported March 5.
Driven by its live export signal to out of state outlets, total handle is up slightly at Tampa Bay Downs through the mid-way part of the 94-day meet, the track reported Feb. 20.
Some Nevada casino racebooks are booking wagers on races from tracks affiliated with TrackNet Media Group after the content company recently cut off signals to the state over a contract dispute.
Despite comments from TrackNet Media Group that negotiations are "going backwards" over issues involving racing signals to Nevada racebooks, the player on the other side of the table offered guarded hope matters can be resolved before a Jan. 25 cut-off deadline.
All-sources handle for all New York Racing Association tracks declined 2.1% in 2008, but purses grew 3.1%, it was reported Jan. 22.
- By Jim Freer
Wagering in Florida on Calder Race Course's recently concluded Tropical at Calder meet fell 31% in 2008, according to the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering.
- By Ryan Conley
Hampered by a 20.3% drop in total handle in December, wagering in the United States declined 7.2% in 2008 to record the lowest overall total in a decade.
- By Jim Freer
Gulfstream Park is hoping that a move to a five-day race week will help produce larger fields and attract more live fans and other bettors on days that have proven more popular than its newly-dark Mondays.
Remington Park in Oklahoma recently completed its 20th season of Thoroughbred racing with a record purse disbursement and increased attendance, but followed national trends with a decline in most wagering statistics.
Woodbine concluded its 167-day Thoroughbred meet Dec. 7 with a 1.55% drop in all-sources handle, the Toronto-area track recently reported.
- By Esther Marr
After turning over a new leaf in management, Youbet.com's net income for the third quarter of 2008 experienced a significant increase in profit from the year before.
Churchill Downs Inc. more than doubled its net earnings against decreasing revenues from continuing operations in the third quarter, the company announced Nov. 5.
The 37-day 2008 Belmont fall meeting, which ended on Oct. 26, produced mixed business results. All-sources handle on NYRA races was $356.3 million, compared with the 2007 figure of $346.5 million, for an increase of 2.8%. Because the 2008 meet included four more days than the 2007 meet, there was actually an 8.3% decline in the equivalent daily average all-sources handle figure.
An otherwise sluggish Oak Tree at Santa Anita meet got turned around by hosting the Breeders' Cup World Championships, Oct. 24-25. Excluding the Breeders' Cup, the Oak Tree handle was down 14%.
- By Tom LaMarra
Handle on races in the United States sharply dropped 9.85% in the third quarter of this year, clearly in keeping with a trend that began in early 2008.
Turfway Park closed its 2008 fall meet with declines in all-sources and on-track handle, the Florence, Ky., track reported Oct. 3.
Presque Isle Downs reported a total handle of $31,425,213 for its 101-day meet that ended Sept. 28, a stand that was 76 days longer than the track's inaugural meet last year.
Early handicapping on signal distribution of the Breeders' Cup World Championships shows the prestigious event will be available to a wide variety of outlets and bettors, at first glance calming fears of any "signal wars" fallout evident in other revenue-sharing disputes involving advance deposit wagering.
Evangeline Downs Racetrack and Casino's recently concluded 2008 spring/summer Thoroughbred season posted all-time highs in average nightly handle, single-night handle, average field size, and purse distribution for the 84-night meet.
- By Ryan Conley
Ellis Park ended its annual racing meet Sept. 1 with a 3% drop in daily handle, despite broader signal distribution to advance deposit wagering outlets.
Del Mar closed its 69th race meeting Sept. 3 with declines in handle and attendance, but track officials were left with a positive attitude in light of tough economic conditions.
- By Jim Freer
Calder Race Course has asked the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering for permission to hold live racing four days a week, rather than five, during 11 weeks beginning Sept. 1.
Severe thunderstorms, heavy rain, and nearly continuous inclement conditions played havoc on attendance and handle figures during the third week of the 2008 Saratoga Race Course meet, according to the New York Racing Association, Inc.
Handle and attendance are down through the first week of the 2008 Saratoga meeting, the New York Racing Association reported July 28.
All-sources handle declined 2.2% during the recently-concluded Belmont Park Spring/Summer meet, the New York Racing Association announced July 23.
- By Ryan Conley
Wagering has dropped 11% on North American Thoroughbred racing since the end of the Triple Crown series -- at least by one indicator -- a disturbing trend that can likely be attributed to a variety of factors.
Churchill Downs Inc. has appointed Ted Nicholson to oversee operations at Calder Race Course on an interim basis, one day after CDI implemented a company-wide personnel overhaul.
Monmouth Park officials said two nearby off-track wagering parlors and skyrocketing gasoline prices have led to decreases in attendance and on-track handle nearly one month into the New Jersey racetrack's 2008 meet.
Hampered by a double-digit handle decline on its biggest race card, the May 17 Preakness Stakes (gr. I), Pimlico Race Course realized a 16.5% drop in all-sources wagering for its 31-day meet that closed June 7.
David Nathanson has been promoted to the newly-created position of president of TVG, the company announced May 19.
After four straight years of handle topping $87 million, wagering on the Preakness program declined 15.8% in a year-over-year comparison with the 2007 card.
Churchill Downs announced May 9 a 20% purse cut for its spring meet effective May 14, laying the blame on horsemen's groups for rejecting offers on signal distribution.
TVG processed $108.8 million in total wagering during the first quarter of 2008, the highest first quarter total in the company's history and a 32% increase over the first quarter of 2007.
All-sources handle dropped nearly 2% on the May 3 card of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), a result a Churchill Downs official blamed on the fallout from an ongoing dispute with horsemen over signal distribution.
Perhaps feeling the effects of an ongoing dispute with horsemen over signal distribution, handle on the May 2 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) program was down about 7%, according to numbers released by the track.
The unaudited figures from the New Zealand Racing Board for the first six months of the 2007/08 season show that despite the challenges imposed by the equine influenza outbreak in Australia, business has continued to deliver strong turnover growth.
MTR Gaming in its annual report said it lost $11.4 million in 2007 and announced Ted Arneault will step down as chairman and chief executive officer at the end of the year.
Youbet.com reported March 31 it lost $28.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2007 on the same day it was notified by NASDAQ it faces delisting from the stock exchange.
- By Ryan Conley
A federal lawsuit between Youbet.com and several entities associated with Virginia racing has been settled, resulting in a renewed effort by the advance deposit wagering company to become licensed in the state.
The parent company of TVG Network reported the horse racing television channel realized a 10% increase in wagers processed for 2007, but saw overall revenues decline slightly for the year.
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