Officials at Gulfstream Park reported total gross handle of $49,909,070 for Saturday’s GI Florida Derby program. The previous record for a non Breeders’ Cup day handle was established earlier this year when bettors wagered $41.9 million on the Pegasus World Cup program. Saturday’s total handle also easily established a record for Florida Derby day, easily surpassing the $32.082 wagered last year.
Saturday’s handle, up 63.03% over last year’s Derby Day handle, was helped by a mandatory payout of the Rainbow 6 that generated a North American record $16,583,425 in new money and a total Pick 6 handle of $21.336 million. That eclipsed both records set Jan. 28 at Gulfstream when a total Pick 6 handle of $19.779 million was paid out and $15.788 million of new money was wagered.
“We want to thank the fans for making this such a truly special day,” said Gulfstream Park General Manager Bill Badgett. “We witnessed some incredible performances today by our equine athletes and jockeys. We want to thank the horsemen from North America and South America for supporting our program. The Stronach Group continues to reinvent the experience of attending Thoroughbred races for entertainment, dining and world-class racing. We will continue building on our customer service, dining and entertainment and on our year-round racing.”