ELMONT, N.Y.— The 35-day Belmont Park Fall Championship Meet generated all-sources handle of $269,002,237, the New York Racing Association announced today. Originally scheduled for 36 days of live racing, the entire card on Saturday, October 27 was cancelled due to dangerously high winds associated with a powerful coastal storm.
Unusually wet weather throughout the fall meet allowed NYRA to run only 117 races on the turf, with 64 races forced off the turf. By comparison, 2017 saw 181 races on the turf with just 5 races forced off the turf. As a result, average field size for the 330 races contested from September 7 to October 28 was 7.25.
On-track handle was $33,396,906.
Live racing shifts to Aqueduct Racetrack on Friday, November 2 for the fall and winter meets. Opening weekend is highlighted by four graded stakes, along with a simulcast of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships from Churchill Downs.
Racing fans can watch and wager on the Breeders’ Cup on Friday, November 2 and Saturday, November 3, while the Aqueduct stakes action kicks off with the 44th running of the grade 3, $150,000 Tempted for 2-year-old fillies at a mile, and the re-scheduled 43rd edition of the grade 3, $200,000 Bold Ruler, a seven-furlong main track tilt for 3-year-olds and up.
The centerpiece of the Aqueduct Fall Meet, which runs from November 2 through December 2 is the grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile Handicap on Saturday, December 1. The Cigar Mile Day card will include the grade 2, $250,000 Remsen for 2-year-olds, the first stop through Aqueduct on the “Road to the Kentucky Derby,” as well as its sister race, the grade 2, $250,000 Demoiselle and the grade 3, $200,000 Go For Wand Handicap for fillies and mares.
The Aqueduct Winter Meet will commence on Friday, December 7 with the first stakes slated for December 8 on a card headlined by the $100,000 Garland of Roses, a six-furlong sprint for fillies and mares.