From a Maryland Jockey Club release
Laurel Park closed its 2015 winter meet Sunday with total average handle up 14.6 percent overall and 15.8 percent on its live product.
Laurel’s average daily handle was $1.764 million compared to $1.540 in 2014. Daily export handle increased 20.2 percent from $1.179 million in 2014 to $1.417 million this winter.
Laurel’s increases on average handle came despite a mid-Atlantic dispute and the loss of 10 live days of racing – 12 total days – due to wintry weather and track conditions. Despite the lost days, total wagering was down only 5.4 percent, from $79.8 million to $75.5 million.
“Despite losing 12 days this winter and with the mid-Atlantic dispute, the numbers are quite respectable overall,” said Maryland Jockey Club General Manager Sal Sinatra. “There’s no doubt we would have beaten our 2014 numbers for total handle if we had raced just a few more days.
“We want to thank our fans, many coming to Laurel in less than ideal weather conditions, as well as our horsemen, who put on a great show each day. We will continue working hard each day to improve Maryland racing and our facilities. We believe there is tremendous potential for growing Maryland Thoroughbred racing.”
Live racing in Maryland shifts to Pimlico beginning Thursday, April 2. First race post is 1:10 p.m. Along with the introduction of the 10-cent Rainbow 6, Pimlico will offer a Pick 5 with an industry low 12 percent takeout.