The Day at the Races
Friday's figures: On-track attendance, 19,882, on-track betting, $1,363,216.50; total betting including simulcast, $8,585,990.71.
This day last year: On-track attendance, 11,601; on-track betting, $1,286,488; total betting including simulcast, $8,779,102.
Coming up: There are five graded stakes at Keeneland on Saturday in three Grade I contests. Champion Tepin is the big name this weekend as she seeks to win the Grade I First Lady Stakes going 1 mile on the turf for the second straight year.
▪ Leading New York jockey Jose Ortiz wasted no time making himself at home during the opening day of the Keeneland meet. Ortiz, who is set for his first full meet at the track, booted home three winners on Friday’s card and came within a nose of winning the Grade II Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix Stakes aboard Limousine Liberal. Before Friday, Ortiz had ridden at Keeneland only eight times. During the 2015 Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland, he and La Verdad finished second to Wavell Avenue in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.
▪ Friday’s attendance of 19,882 marked a Fall Meet record Friday opening-day record. The previous Friday opening-day Fall Meet record was 19,026 established in 2011.