The handle for this year’s Belmont Stakes (G1) decreased by 5.8 percent from last year’s number, bringing in $93,666,832 this year. Although, overall, handle for the three-day Belmont Stakes Racing Festival was up 1.6 percent from last year, bringing in a total of $124,740,193 this year.
In addition to handle decreasing this year, attendance for the third and final leg of this year’s Triple Crown was also down. Last year’s Belmont Stakes saw 60,114 people in attendance; that number dropped to 57,729. Attendance drop was likely due to the race having zero Triple Crown presence. This year’s Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming and Preakness Stakes winner Cloud Computing skipped running in the Belmont Stakes.
This year’s Belmont Stakes Day on-track handle also saw a slight dip, falling from $11,694,897 last year to $11,594,599 this year. All-sources wagering on the Belmont Stakes alone was $47,163,773.
On-track handle for the Thursday and Friday portions of the three-day card was a combined $4.13 million. That number is an 18 percent increase over last year’s numbers for the same two-day total. Total handle for Friday and Saturday combined this year was $31.07 million, or 32 percent more than last year over the same two-day period.
Betting in Japan brought in $4,698,525 million. That number is not included in the all-sources handle, but the New York Racing Association will receive a percentage of the revenue. Pre-race projections had Japan bringing in $10-$20 million in wagering because of the presence of Japanese-bred Epicharis in the Belmont Stakes, but betting interest declined when it was announced he was scratched pre-race.