Maryland Jockey Club handle tops $600 million

by | Jan 6, 2018 | Breaking, Business, Maryland, MD Business

From a Maryland Jockey Club release

The Maryland Jockey Club announced today total handle on races at Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course in 2017 exceeded $600 million for the first time since 2008.

Total handle was $627.3 million compared to $560.1 million in 2016 while average handle was $3.3 million, up from $3.091 million in 2016. There was also a significant increase from in-state handle, which includes wagering on out-of-state racing from in-state venues, from $408.6 million to $442.1 million.

Wagering on Laurel and Pimlico’s live product was up about 12 percent versus 2016.

Wagering on racing at Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course has been up year-over-year since 2015 and is up $216 million since 2014.

The Maryland Jockey Club continued building on its signature events

  • The Preakness Stakes – the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown – set all-time records for its 142nd running May 20 when a record crowd of 140,327 fans wagered a record $97,168,658, an increase of 3-percent over the previous year.
  • The Black-Eyed Susan Day May 19 drew a record crowd of 50,339 that wagered a record $19.89 million, a 6-percent increase over the previous year.
  • The 32nd anniversary of Maryland Million Day attracted a festive crowd of 22,682, an increase of 4.4 percent over last year, while in-state handle on the program was up 2.8 percent over the previous year.

The Maryland Jockey Club is also preparing to open an off-track betting facility in Hampstead. It will be the fifth OTB the Maryland Jockey Club has opened over the past several years along with those in Perryville, Boonsboro, Timonium and Baltimore.

“We’re happy to continue seeing increases in handle while making our product more available and accessible to the public through our growing OTB Network,” said Sal Sinatra, President and General Manager of the Maryland Jockey Club. “Our major race days continue to grow and we continue to emphasize the incredible entertainment opportunities available at our facilities. We’ve had wonderful support throughout the year from horsemen across North America and we continue seeing new stables participating in our races at Pimlico and over our world-class turf course at Laurel.

“We will continue to work on improvements throughout our facilities, on our stakes and racing program, and growing our brand with world-class racing and entertainment.”