The Horseplayers Association of North America has rated Del Mar Thoroughbred Club 14th out of the 65 tracks studied in North America.
Cumulative Takeout Score: 2.44
Field Size: 8.6
Wager Variety Score: 1.0
Best Bet: Low WPS Takeout
Total HANA Score: 2.135
Del Mar represents good horseplayer value in several areas, notably its win takeout. Field size is on the lower end of tracks, but is respectable, and of special note: During the last ten days of the meet, field size improved dramatically to 9.5. In 2008 Del Mar, like most tracks on the Continent, had a tough year. Joe Harper, President: “No doubt, we were swimming against a strong (economic) current this year. But we swam well and we will get stronger because of it. While this economy has threatened to drown a lot of folks out there, we held our own and we don’t need to be making any excuses for that.”
From Del Mar: In the end, Del Mar’s on-track attendance dipped slightly by 4.3% and its overall handle was down by 7%. Still, the final numbers there — 16,002 and $13,001,768 per day — were far and away the best recorded in racing and once again among the national Thoroughbred leaders. It is notable, also, that the figure for total handle, despite the decline, registers as sixth-best in track history.
I can understand why Del Mar is ranked 14th from a horseplayer's perspective. However, from a racing fan's perspective Del Mar is arguably #1. (You, Saratoga fans, I said arguably).
I would love to see a HANA survey next year and see which is number one as a pure event meet. HANA members are super-passionate. We'd have to separate them with chicken wire on the debate between Saratoga, KEE and DEL, no doubt!
The ole Del Mar versus Saratoga debate is always fun, but as far as I am concerned its a no contest, Del Mar wins easily because (1) the weather is far more temperate and predictable, (2) its more comfortable and less crowded, not to mention more modern, (3) you just can't beat being right next to the Pacific Ocean.
This is the most overpriced and over-rated racetrack in America run by the most elite band of boys in the industry.
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