Posted: Jan. 4, 2020
The New York Racing Association reported that 2019 race meets at Aqueduct Racetrack, Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course generated all-sources pari-mutuel handle of $2,108,126,369 over 217 live racing programs.
The figure is down 0.025% from 2018, when all-sources handle of $2,113,408,494 was reported for 219 programs. In 2019, seven racing programs were canceled because of weather and six cards were shortened.
NYRA said there were 2,000 races at the three tracks in 2019 versus 2,038 in 2018. Last year, 125 races were taken off the turf compared with 193 in 2018.
For the first time in history, NYRA generated more than $700 million in all-sources handle during the 2019 meet at Saratoga, which was conducted over a five-day race week rather than six days. Wagering from all-sources at Saratoga totaled $705,343,949, a figure that eclipsed the previous record set in 2017 by nearly $29 million (4.2%).
The milestone record was achieved despite the cancellation of a full racing card on the second Saturday of the season due to extreme heat and the cancellation of the final seven races on July 25 due to severe storms.
Average daily handle across all three tracks in 2019 was $9,714,868, up 0.067% from $9,650,267 in 2018. Total on-track handle at all NYRA meets in 2019 was $310,053,754, down 5.2% from $326,893,963 the previous year.
(Belmont Park photo courtesy of NYRA)