Monmouth Park concluded its 2012 meet on Sunday, Oct. 7,
with an increase in attendance and declines in on-track and total handle.
“Given all the uncertainty that surrounded this meet from
the beginning, I’m happy we were able to conduct a 2012 racing season,” said
Dennis Drazin, advisor to the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association
(NJTHA) and Darby Development LLC, operator of Monmouth Park Racetrack. “Back in April it didn’t look like there
would be a 2012 Monmouth meet and to be able to maintain the purse levels we
did and increase the number of visitors to the racetrack, I would say our
season was a success.”
For the 65-day meet, which ran from May 12 through Oct. 7,
the average attendance was 8,403, a 10.9% increase over last year’s average of
7,574. On-track wagering came in at
$30,617,780 for an average of $471,043.
Last season, the Oceanport racetrack showed on-track average handle of
$490,999. Average daily all-source wagering
on Monmouth in 2012 was $4,060,335, a 13.5% decrease over the $4,695,424
averaged during the 71 days in 2011.
“Based on what we knew coming into this meet, we anticipated
a drop in our handle numbers,” Drazin said.
“This was our first meet at the helm and it should provide a good
starting point to build on in the future.”
On May 4, 2012 the NJTHA entered into an agreement with the
New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority (NJSEA) to lease Monmouth Park for
five years, with a horsemen’s option for three 10-year extensions. The NJSEA had operated Monmouth Park
“We have now put a punctuation mark at the end of the era of
uncertainty and will move forward with our plans to revitalize Monmouth Park,”
Drazin said. “Expanded gaming
opportunities, new family entertainment and continued world-class Thoroughbred
racing will be the cornerstones of our future.
No idea will be too small and no goal too big to reach. We’re committed to our fans, the racetrack,
the community and our horsemen to build a Monmouth
Park which provides entertainment at
the Jersey Shore that is second-to-none.”
Prior to opening the 2012 racing season, the NJTHA installed
four large-screen video boards at the racetrack and welcomed a new on-track
caterer. In addition, just last week,
Bluegrass miniature golf, located at the north-end of the Monmouth Park
property, opened for business.
“These projects were the results of vision and hard work by
all interested parties,” added Drazin.
“But it’s really just the tip of the iceberg of what the future holds
here. Not only are we excited about the
opportunity to operate Monmouth
Park, but more
importantly committed to continuing the tradition of Thoroughbred racing while
building a more vibrant entertainment destination for locals and Shore-goers,
Taking home meet-end honors were Elvis Trujillo, who piloted
110 winners during the meet. It was Trujillo’s third overall
title and second in a row following his victories in 2009 and 2011. Jane Cibelli, who made Monmouth Park
history last year by becoming the first female to win the training
championship, successfully defended her title, winning 30 races this year. Patricia Generazio, whose charges visited the
winner’s circle 17 times, was the meet’s leading owner.
Live Thoroughbred racing in New Jersey shifts north to the
Meadowlands in East Rutherford for eight all-turf cards beginning on Friday,
Oct. 12. Racing at The Big M will be
Fridays and Saturdays through Nov. 3, with a first post of 2:15 p.m.