SANTA ANITA WINTER MEET OFF TO FAST START AS ATTENDANCE & HANDLE SOAR THROUGH FIRST EIGHT DAYS OF RACING; TOTAL ALL-SOURCES HANDLE UP 25 PERCENT

 

OPENING DAY CROWD OF 40,810 & OVERALL HANDLE OF $17 MILLION KEY BULLISH START

 

                ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2015)–On the heels of a spectacular opener on Dec. 26, Santa Anita Park posted significant increases in both attendance and pari-mutuel handle through the first eight days of its current 68-day Winter Meet, which concludes April 19.

With an on-track attendance of 40,810 on opening day, the track posted a whopping 33 percent increase over the previous year and its all-sources handle of $17,026,489 million was a hefty increase of 29 percent over a year ago. Business has remained brisk, as all-sources handle through eight days is up 25 percent.

“We are very pleased to be off to a solid start at this meet,” said Santa Anita President Tom Ludt. “The overall handle numbers for opening day and continuing through today have been very good and we can attribute a great deal of that to our horsemen, who have been providing us with deep and competitive fields for our customers to wager on.

“Our opening day attendance was helped by a variety of factors, including our free admission and parking policy in the Infield, which really seems to be resonating with a good many people on the weekends. On opening day, we had over 10,000 people out there, which is fantastic.”

Santa Anita’s popular 50 cent Pick 5 led the way Sunday, as a carryover of $392,388 generated an astonishing total pool of $2,497,498.

“We realize that our meet is still very young, but we’re very encouraged about our long-range prospects this winter and into our Spring Meet, which opens on April 25 and runs through June 28,” said Ludt.

Live racing resumes at Santa Anita on Thursday, with first post time at 1 p.m. For entries, or to make dining and seating reservations, please visit santaanita.com.