The Racing Journal Logo

New Wagering Records set at Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships

November 5, 2004     E-mail this page to a friend!

Ghostzapper heading to post
(photo by Phyllis Tryon)
By Jim Gluckson

New wagering records were established at the 21st Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships held last Saturday at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.  Four major wagering records were set, including total handle, Breeders’ Cup-only handle, simulcast handle and international handle.

Total all-sources handle for the 12-race card was $120,863,117. The previous mark of $120,631,437 was set last year at Santa Anita Park. At Lone Star Park, the crowd of 53,717 wagered $13,326,726 on the full 12-race program, and $11,274,066 on the eight Breeders’ Cup races.

A record total of $109,838,668 was wagered on the eight Breeders’ Cup races at Lone Star Park and at simulcast outlets around the world. This mark breaks the old record of $108,578,049 set in 2002 at Arlington Park and is a 2.1% increase from 2003 figures.

A new record was also established for total simulcast handle, as $107,536,392 was wagered on the full 12-race card. Simulcasting accounted for 89% of the $120.8 million total handle. Among wagering by individual states for all 12 races, Texas led the way with $14,594,711, including the on-track handle at Lone Star and other racing facilities in the state. California led all simulcast jurisdictions with $12,709,298 and was followed by New York with $12,583,903.

International simulcast handle, including common- and separate-pool wagering, totaled $16,401,782.  Canada wagered $4,930,127 in a separate pari-mutuel pool.  France led all common pool countries with $2,120,643 wagered on the eight Breeders’ Cup races, and an additional $1,409,666 in separate-pool wagering.  International handle represented 13.6% of the total handle.

The total pool for the Breeders’ Cup Ultra Pick 6 was $4,566,837, an increase of 1.7% over last year’s Pick 6 pool. No one correctly selected all six races. There were 61 tickets containing five winners, good for a payout of $56,149.

“We are delighted with our record-setting wagering performance at this year’s Breeders’ Cup,” said Breeders’ Cup President and NTRA Commissioner D.G. Van Clief, Jr. “Our fans responded positively to this year’s wagering opportunities, both on track at Lone Star and off-track at sites around the globe. We are grateful to the staff and management of Lone Star and the 9,400 wagering facilities worldwide that did such a magnificent job working together to make this event a success.”

The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of horseracing interests, including the American Quarter Horse Association, charged with increasing popularity of horseracing and improving economic conditions for industry participants. The NTRA and Breeders’ Cup Limited administer the Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s year-end Championships consisting of eight races and $14 million in purses and awards and the Breeders’ Cup Stakes Program. The NTRA has offices in Lexington, Ky., and New York City. NTRA press releases appear on the NTRA Web site,