According to VHBPA Executive Director, Frank Petramalo, “If all goes well and the creek doesn't rise the TrackNet situation could be resolved today. I believe a substantial portion of the 28% decrease in handle is due to the TrackNet dispute because in the past those tracks have contributed about 25% of the total simulcast handle.”
To date, total handle for the first 13 days of racing has declined from $12,901,036 to $9,270,072, a decline of 28.14 percent.
To no one’s surprise in these economic times, attendance has also slipped 9.18 percent from 21,498 to 19,524.
Saturday’s $500,000 Colonial Turf Cup saw an attendance decline from 4,557 in 2008 to 3,364 and an overall decline in handle from $2,646,117 to $2,112,875.
Had the 18 tracks and ADWs represented by TrackNet taken the Colonial Downs signal on Saturday when the Turf Cup was the biggest stakes race of the day, it would seem likely the total handle figures may well have increased over last year’s levels.