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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Mid-Summer 2016 Handle Update Del Mar vs. Saratoga

In October 2014 I attended a CHRB Parimutuel and ADW Committee Meeting at Los Al and presented a spreadsheet that indicated an alarming trend:

In Win-Place-Show pools where both tracks have approximate level takeout rates:

During the summer of 2014 Del Mar handled 82.76 percent as much as Saratoga did.

But in the Exacta pool where Del Mar has a significantly higher takeout rate than Saratoga does:

Del Mar handled just 54.79 percent as much as Saratoga did.

I also presented the argument that if Del Mar's Exacta's takeout rate had been in line with New York's Exacta takeout rate: They likely would have handled about 82.76 percent as much as Saratoga in their Exacta pools like they did in Win-Place-Show pools.

I also presented a lost revenue calculation suggesting Del Mar was suffering an opportunity cost of approximately $10k per exacta pool because their exacta takeout at 22.68 percent was and still is out of line with New York's exacta takeout rate of $18.50 percent.

After I presented my findings, a number of speakers representing track management and the TOC took the podium and told the Commissioners of the CHRB that although my numbers might appear alarming they weren't too concerned - but that they would monitor this trend going forward.

I posted about this on Paceadvantage. Anyone interested in the numbers or more detail can read about this at the following link:
http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showpost.php?p=1849170&postcount=10


Fast forward two years to summer 2016.

Right now as I type this the premier race meets for both Del Mar and Saratoga are currently underway.

This morning I ran a similar Del Mar vs. Saratoga handle and revenue comparison.

I've begun compiling a spreadsheet that I plan on presenting to the CHRB after the summer 2016 meets for both Del Mar and Saratoga have concluded.

For those of you who might be curious about the 2016 numbers - here's how they shake out so far:

First, all numbers presented below are on an average per race basis and reflect races run from opening day at both meets through Monday August 22, 2016.

From a total revenue standpoint, the trend that I pointed out to the CHRB, TOC, and Track Management back in October of 2014 appears to have worsened.

Two years ago in 2014:

In Win-Place-Show pools where both tracks have approximate level takeout rates:

Del Mar handled 82.76 percent as much as Saratoga did.

In the Exacta pool where Del Mar has a significantly higher takeout rate:

Del Mar handled just 54.79 percent as much as Saratoga did.

The opportunity cost or lost revenue number was about $10,090.00 per exacta pool.

So far this summer in 2016:

In Win-Place-Show pools where both tracks have approximate level takeout rates:

Del Mar is now handling 75.82 percent as much as Saratoga.

In the Exacta pool where Del Mar has a significantly higher takeout rate:

Del Mar is now handling just 47.41 percent as much as Saratoga!

The opportunity cost or lost revenue number is now running about $12,400.00 per exacta pool.

Earth to CHRB...

On second thought, never mind.

Under-performing exacta pools and millions in lost purse money are nothing to be concerned about.

Jeff Platt
President, HANA

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