By Mark Ratzky, publicity – Cal Expo Harness
Despite one of the wettest winters on record in Northern California, final figures from the Watch and Wager LLC harness meet at Cal Expo that concluded last Saturday were positive.
Average nightly handle was $809,724, representing a 5.4 percent increase over last season. Nightly on-track handle rose 2.5 percent and in-state brick and mortar numbers showed a major turnaround with a 14 percent increase. Out-of-state handle was down 1.5 percent and ADW wagering was the same as last year.
Field size at the meet was up from 7.6 starters per race to 7.9, with the percentage of winning favorites being 36.25 percent. The popular Cal Expo nightly Pick 4 pool averaged $45,243.
The training title came down to the final night, eventually resulting in a dead-heat between Kathie Plested and Bob Johnson, who both ended up with 55 victories. Lino Pacheco was third with 51 training scores.
On the driving front, Luke Plano made a runaway of the title with 150 victories from his 607 trips to the post, while Mooney Svendsen was clearly second in the final standings with his 112 trips to the charmed enclosure.
Last fall, Watch and Wager executed an additional five-year deal with the Cal Expo Fair Board. Opening night for the fall meeting will be Saturday, October 28, featuring a simulcast of the Breeders Crown from Hoosier Park.