Sunday, October 29, 2017

Recap - Keeneland Fall 2017 Meet

Keeneland announced a takeout increase back in August.

Win Place Show was hiked to 17.50% (the maximum allowed by Kentucky state law.) --This is an increase of 9.375% vs. the previous takeout rate of 16.00%.

Exacta, Double, Trifecta, Superfecta, Pick3, and Pick4 were hiked to 22.00% (again the maximum allowed by Kentucky state law.) --This is an increase of 15.79% vs. the previous takeout rate of 19.00%.

We polled HANA membership. 63% said they wanted a boycott. 28% said no. And 9% said other.

Based on that we organized a boycott.

Handle update on the site:

Keeneland's fall 2017 meet is now in the books.

Keeneland was down more than $11.3M or about -8.52% vs. their fall 2016 meet.

How much of that -8.52% is because we announced a boycott -- and how much is simply the market speaking is anyone's guess.

At first glance, -8.52% might not look like it's all that bad for them.

As a few of you with jobs in the industry have pointed out to me -- looking ONLY at last year's fall numbers: Keeneland is likely revenue neutral right now, or maybe even revenue positive. (But if so, not by much.)

But I think putting blinkers on and looking ONLY at last year's fall numbers would be a huge mistake.

Last year at this time:

Keeneland was the big dog on the block among the A tracks. They out-handled both Belmont and Santa Anita. They ranked #1 in market share vs. the other tracks they compete with for handle dollars.

Fast forward to now:

Keeneland has been replaced as the big dog on the block. Belmont now ranks #1 in market share among the tracks competing for handle dollars this fall.

This is significant.

Keeneland lost ground to its competitors.

At the same time that Keeneland was down -$11.32M and -8.52%, their primary competitors Belmont and Santa Anita, were UP a combined total of +$25.32M or an average of +11.77%

These are terrible results for Keeneland.

The question isn't whether or not Keeneland had a takeout increase and underperformed the market by a good -20%.

The question is whether or not anyone is listening.

--Jeff Platt, HANA President

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