Friday, February 15, 2008Contact: John Cooney
(859) 224-2714
Publication of Fact Book on US racing industry

Statistics in The Jockey Club’s 2008 Online Fact Book, which was released today and is available through the Publications & Resources section of the organization’s website at, reaffirm the beneficial impact of “racinos” (racetracks that offer alternative gaming) on state Thoroughbred racing and breeding industries.

The Jockey Club Fact Book is published annually as a statistical and informational guide to the North American Thoroughbred industry; the 18th edition of the printed version will be published and distributed in early May.

Available purse money in the U.S. in 2007 increased 5.4% to a record $1,180,587,881. Gains were derived largely from racino revenue in several states, including Pennsylvania, where the first full year of slot machine gaming at Philadelphia Park and the opening of Presque Isle Downs in Erie boosted purses in the state by 77.8% from 2006 to 2007. Presque Isle Downs offered nearly $11 million in purses during its inaugural meet.

The contribution to purses from alternative gaming at racetracks also helped boost purses in Louisiana by 26.9% and in Oklahoma by 16.6%.

While U.S. gross purses increased for the third time in the last four years, total handle on U.S. Thoroughbred races in 2007 declined 0.4% to $14,724,681,108.

In the Breeding section of the Online Fact Book, seven of the top 10 foal-producing states increased their production of registered foals between 1996 and 2006. The four leading percentage gainers among the top 10, based on foal registrations completed as of Jan. 15, 2008, were states that have established racinos: New Mexico, up 126.2%; Louisiana, up 78.8%; New York, up 44.5%; and Pennsylvania, up 40.3%.

Statistics in the Sales section reveal total gross auction sales of $1,234,507,606 in 2007, which represents a 2.5% decline from the record auction performance of 2006. Double-digit percentage gains in gross sales and average price for broodmares in 2007 were offset by declines in gross sales and average price for weanlings, yearlings and 2-year-olds.

In the Online Fact Book, some tables have been expanded to include multi-year reports; others include state-by-state analysis. Statistics in the Breeding section, which by their very nature change constantly, are updated regularly.

The following sections of the Online Fact Book have also been updated: Thoroughbred Racing and Breeding Worldwide in 2006; the International Calendar of Events, which includes all Grade 1 races for which dates are known; and the Directory of National, State, Canadian and International organizations, which includes phone numbers for all organizations and website links for organizations that have them.

The Jockey Club, founded in 1894 and dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing, is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds. The Jockey Club fulfills that longstanding commitment by serving the industry through its family of companies and by providing support and leadership on a wide range of important industry initiatives.