Figures for Keeneland's fall meet are down sharply from last year's meet, according to a Daily Racing Form report out Wednesday. Attendance has tumbled 19 percent, while on-track handle is down 14 percent.
Officials attribute the changes to the poor weather, including liberal amounts of rain and cool weather, as well as a somewhat stronger-than-average showing by the University of Kentucky's football team. The team had afternoon home games on both of the two Saturdays of the Keeneland meet so far.
Keeneland director of mutuels Jim Goodman admitted that even with better weather and scheduling, he had expected a decline due the change in track surface. Field sizes are smaller as fewer horses ship in for dirt than the old artificial surface, and Goodman anticipates that horseplayers are waiting to get a feel for the dirt track before returning to old wagering levels.
Read more at the Daily Racing Form
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