Belmont Stakes Racing Festival Generates Huge Handle
Justify wasn’t the only big winner during the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival. Saturday’s blockbuster Belmont Stakes Day card, highlighted by Justify’s Triple Crown triumph, generated all-sources handle of $137,954,895, the second-highest one-day handle in NYRA history behind Belmont Stakes Day in 2014.
With attendance of 90,327, on-track handle was $16,159,584.
2018 Belmont Stakes Racing Festival Handle (ALL SOURCES ON NYRA RACES)
- Thursday, June 7: $10,180,697
- Friday, June 8: $20,839,703
- BELMONT STAKES DAY, June 9: $137,954,895
- Belmont Stakes Racing Festival all-sources handle: $168,975,295
- Belmont Stakes all-sources handle: $72,702,815 with on-track handle totaling $6,884,907
During the 3-day racing festival, trainer Chad Brown won top honors with jockey Javier Castellano securing top riding performance.
The competition, based on a 5-3-2-1 point basis, began with the first race on Thursday, June 7 and continued through the 13-race card on Belmont Stakes Day, June 9, which was highlighted by Justify becoming the 13th Triple Crown winner after capturing the 150th running of the Belmont Stakes. The Belmont Stakes Racing Festival featured 33 races, including 18 stakes, offering $9.4 million in purses.
The category for the “Sunny Jim” Fitzsimmons Award for Outstanding Trainer went to Chad Brown, the two-time reigning Eclipse Award winner for Outstanding Trainer. He finished atop the leaderboard with 53 points. Out of 26 starters, Brown saddled five winners and earned six second-place finishes and a pair of third-place efforts, highlighted by A Raving Beauty’s win in the Grade 1 Longines Just a Game, Fourstar Crook’s win in the Grade 2 New Yorks, Lewis Bay’s victory in the Grade 3 Bed o’Roses Invitational and Gronkowski’s second-place finish in the Belmont Stakes.
Javier Castellano finished on the board in 53.85 percent of his 26 total mounts, earning more than $1.2 million in purses to win the Eddie Arcaro Award. The Hall of Famer registered 51 points on the strength of five wins, six second-place finishes and three third-place efforts. Castellano led Call To Mind, owned by Her Majesty, the Queen, to victory in the Grade 2 Belmont Gold Cup Invitational on June 8 and also piloted Imperial Hint to a win in the True North also with Our Braintrust’s victory in the Tremont on the day before Belmont Stakes Day.