Total handle will be more than $673 million, up $80 million or 13 percent over last year’s previous record of $595 million. All sources average handle will be approximately $7.8 million, up from last year’s previous record of $7.5 million.
Gulfstream’s meet was highlighted by single-day records March 31 on Florida Derby Day with a total handle of $26.7 million and an on-track record of $2.9 million.
Gulfstream also set a new record for the number of turf races run – 393 – topping the previous mark last year of 340. Meanwhile, average starters per race were 9.25.
“We’re thankful our fans, both locally and globally, as well as our horsemen, embraced our racing product as well as our historic early opening,” said Gulfstream President and General Manager Timothy Ritvo. “The records established this year both on and off track, as well as the new fans that came to our facility this year and returned again and again, support the vision of our Chairman, Mr. Frank Stronach. Meanwhile, Florida Derby Day was truly memorable and continues to be one of greatest days of racing in the world.
“While our horsemen put on a remarkable show each and every day, the management and staff continued its efforts to make customer service a priority while continuing to build strong relationships in the community at large. We’re also very proud of the work we continue doing in the Thoroughbred community, helping to raise money for The Gulfstream Park Thoroughbred After-Care Program and Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund throughout the meet.
“We also want to thank the New York Racing Association for their cooperation in helping to coordinate post times to give racing fans an opportunity to see the finest racing in the world. We look forward to opening for the 2012-13 season Dec. 1 and hosting on opening day the Claiming Crown.”