Average daily handle at Belmont fall meet eclipses $10 million
by Pat McKenna
The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) today announced that the recently concluded 31-day Belmont Park fall meet generated $10,346,669 in average daily handle from all sources and $320,746,749 in total handle from all sources.
Average daily handle at the Belmont fall meet has grown considerably since 2019, when the 37-day fall meet generated $7,430,533 in average daily handle from all sources. The 2020 Belmont fall meet, which was contested over 27 live race days, generated $9,923,813 in average daily handle from all sources, a 33.6 percent increase over 2019.
With this year’s 4.3 percent increase over 2020, average daily handle for the Belmont Park fall meet has risen 39 percent since 2019.
The total all sources handle of $320,746,749 represents a 19.7 percent increase over the 2020 Belmont Park fall meet, which saw total all sources handle of $267,942,961.
Originally scheduled for 28 days of live racing, NYRA extended the 2021 Belmont fall meet to include three additional dates from Friday, November 5 through Sunday, November 7. As a result, the fall meet was contested over 31 days.
With the return of fans and the easing of COVID-19 protocols, on-track handle was $30,463,824, a 54 percent increase over 2020, when only a limited number of owners were permitted in attendance. On-track handle in 2019, which was contested over 37 days, was $32,523,57.
A total of 143 races were run on the turf in 2021 with 16 forced off the turf due to weather. The 2020 Belmont fall meet saw 118 races on the turf with 24 races forced off the turf.
Average field size for the 299 total races run during the fall meet was 8.03, a 1.9 percent increase over 2020.
Highlighted by the Grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile Handicap on December 4, the 15-day Aqueduct fall meet begins on Thursday and continues through Sunday, December 5.
New York City has established strict vaccine requirements for nearly all indoor settings. Accordingly, and in compliance with New York City law, anyone seeking to enter Aqueduct Racetrack must show proof of vaccination in order to gain admittance.
Admission to Aqueduct, which will be open to the public on live race days only, is free of charge. The gates will open daily at 11 a.m.
Fans visiting Aqueduct should use the Clubhouse Entrance to provide the required proof of vaccination. Preferred parking will be $10 daily in the Clubhouse Lot and general parking will be in the Conduit Lot. All parking fees must be paid via credit card.
America’s Day at the Races will present daily coverage and analysis of the fall meet at Aqueduct Racetrack on the networks of FOX Sports. For the complete broadcast schedule, visit NYRA.com/ADATR.
For additional information, visit NYRA.com.