Wagering on U.S. horse races showed significant gains in the first quarter of the year compared to 2017, data from Equibase released Thursday reveals.
Although there were fewer race days in 2018's first quarter, betting increased 6 percent compared to the first quarter of 2017. Average wagering per race day was up 10 percent. During March, with a like number of race days, saw an increase of 12 percent in wagering.
Purses also increased in both March and first quarter, with average purses per race day up nearly 10 percent in the first quarter and almost 15 percent in March. Average field sizes were up slightly while the number of races dropped 3 percent in the first quarter.