Mid-Atlantic handle rose just a tad this past weekend, an increase powered in part by bridge-jumpers on Charles Town’s Saturday stakes race, according to our new HandleTrak report.

Total handle for the eight cards run this weekend at Charles Town, Delaware, Monmouth, Parx, and Penn National exceeded $15.8 million, representing a 2.6 percent increase over last weekend.  It was the region’s third busiest weekend since the beginning of July.

Four of the region’s five operating tracks saw handle within 10 percent of the prior weekend’s.  Delaware and Monmouth were down a bit from last weekend — 7 percent and 2 percent, respectively — while Parx and Penn National were up a bit.  For both Parx and Penn National, it was the busiest weekend since June.

Charles Town was the region’s outlier, with handle increasing by more than 34 percent.  But bridge-jumpers — bettors who pour money on the favorite, assuming it to be a can’t-miss proposition — likely drove the increase.  More than $440,000 of the $1.3 million wagered at Charles Town on Saturday was in the win-place-show pool for the evening’s Frank Gall Memorial Stakes.  When 1-9 Lucy’s Bob Boy cruised to victory, he paid $2.20 to win, show, and place and presumably created a minus pool for the track.  Still, the track — and the region as a whole — would likely have shown an increase in business even without the bridge-jumping.