NTRA: DROP IN HANDLE ACCELERATES IN THIRD QUARTER by Paulick Report Staff|11.17.2010|12:46am The following press release from the National Thoroughbred Racing Association is not good news, though not entirely unexpected. Handle in the third quarter (July-September) fell by almost 10%. The decline is not surprising, but it virtually confirms something I wrote the other day saying that U.S. handle for 2008 will be at its lowest level since 1999. Don't look for any bright spots in the fourth quarter in light of the current economic crisis. — Ray Paulick The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) and Equibase Company LLC today released the “Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators“ for United States and Canadian pari-mutuel wagering on U.S. Thoroughbred racing during the third quarter of 2008, as well as for U.S. purses and race days, with prior-year, third-quarter comparisons. During the third quarter, pari-mutuel handle decreased 9.85% in year-over-year comparisons. Total purses were off by 2.37% during the same period, while race days were down by 1.29%. For the nine months ending on September 30, wagering is down 5.75% compared to 2007 levels, with purses dipping 0.04% and race days off by 0.87%. “Our industry's difficult year continued during the summer as a harsh economy and other factors continued to negatively impact business,” said Alex Waldrop, president and CEO of the NTRA. Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators (third qtr. 2008 vs. third qtr. 2007) Indicator 3Q 2008 3Q 2007 % Change Wagering on U.S. Races* $3,489,171,872 $3,870,348,046 -9.85 U.S. Purses $350,636,880 $359,154,213 -2.37 U.S. Race Days 1,913 1,938 -1.29 *Includes worldwide commingled wagering on U.S. races and separate pool wagering in Canada on U.S. races. Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators (first three qtrs. 2008 vs. first three qtrs. 2007) Indicator 1,2,3 Q 2008 1,2,3 Q 2007 % Change Wagering on U.S. Races* $10,754,907,211 $11,411,642,388 -5.75 U.S. Purses $891,938,358 $892,336,110 -0.04 U.S. Race Days 4,786 4,828 -0.87 *Includes worldwide commingled wagering on U.S. races and separate pool wagering in Canada on U.S. races.