Churchill says night racing is a hit

Churchill Downs says it has a hit on its hands with its Downs After Dark series, which returns for three themed party nights of racing on June 17, 24 and July 1.

Night racing, which began as an experiment in 2009, has tripled on-track attendance and doubled on-track wagering on Fridays, the track said Tuesday.

The "Opening Night" event that kicked off Derby Week in April drew 38,142 people, the track's highest non-Derby, -Oaks or -Breeders' Cup attendance. On-track wagering for the opener shot up 89.5 percent to $2 million and all-sources betting hit $8.9 million.