Monday, June 10, 2019

10 Days When Sports Fans Bet Huge Money on Horse Racing

Here are the ten days of the year when sports fans bet the most money on horse racing. In 2018, a total of $11.2 billion was bet on horse racing (thoroughbreds). Over the ten days when fans bet the most money a total of $879 million gets bet representing 7.9% of all the money bet on all the races for the year.


As you can see below the three Triple Crown races, Kentucky Derby, Belmont and Preakness Stakes, dominate this list. Including the Friday before each Triple Crown race, over $600 million gets wagered during the Triple Crown races including a whopping $320 million for just the Kentucky Derby two days.

The  Breeders Cup two days of racing also produce a huge amount of money being wagered at over $160 million. Impressively, Saratoga hosts two of the ten days on this list even though it does not have a Triple Crown race or any Breeders Cup race.


10 Days When Sports Fans Bet Huge Money on Horse Racing


1. Kentucky Derby - $260 million (2019)

By far the biggest horse racing day of the year is Kentucky Derby day. Total handle for Kentucky Derby day is just about double what the second biggest day of the year generates.


2. Belmont Stakes - $138 million (2018)

Having a horse going for the Triple Crown increases the handle on Belmont Stakes day by over $30 million. Without a Triple Crown on the line Belmont Stakes day handle is a little over $100 million.


3. Breeders Cup - $115 million (2017 Del Mar)

Sports fans pour in the money on Breeders Cup Day as the best horses run for huge purses. As you will see later on down the list the Breeders Cup Friday handle is also huge.


4. Preakness Stakes - $100 million (2019)

The 2nd Triple Crown race of the year sees fans wagering almost $100 million a year.


5. Kentucky Oaks - $60 million

Churchill Downs has succeeded in making Kentucky Oaks Day a huge racing day for sports fans.


6. Breeders Cup Friday - $55 million (2010)

When you combine the Friday and Saturday Breeders Cup cards the total handle is always over $150 million a year. Breeders Cup Friday generated $52 million in 2018.


7. Travers Stakes - $52 million (2018)

Saratoga is the number one horse racing meet of the year for most sports fans and the Travers Stakes is the biggest racing day of the year at Saratoga.


8. Florida Derby - $49.9 million (2018)

In addition to the actual Triple Crown races, fans also love to bet on the major prep races for the Kentucky Derby.


9. Pegasus World Cup - $42 million (2018)

An average of $40 million has been wagered for each of the Pegasus World Cup days so far. The races are run at Gulfstream which features live popular band performances after the races.


10. Woodward Day - $31 million (2018)

Travers Day is for the three year old horses at Saratoga and Woodward Day is for the best older horses in the country. Sports fans love Saratoga.



Even More Huge Money Betting Days in Horse Racing



  • Pacific Classic - $26 million (2018)


The Pacific Classic is run at Del Mar and sports fans also love to bet huge money on one of the biggest races of the year for the best older horses in the country.


  • Santa Anita Derby - $24 million (2018)



  • Santa Anita Handicap - $23 million (2014)


Fans also wagered a record $20.5 million on Santa Anita's opening day for the 2019 season.



  • Blue Grass Stakes - $22.6 million



  • Black Eyed Susan - $22.3 million (2018)



  • Belmont Stakes Friday - $21 million (2018)

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