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updated: 5/15/2012 4:32 PM

Arlington Park shows strong attendance gains

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  • More than 32,000 showed up to celebrate Mother's Day and take in some racing at Arlington Park racetrack on Sunday. Attendance was up over 18 percent from 2011 figures, track officials said.

      More than 32,000 showed up to celebrate Mother's Day and take in some racing at Arlington Park racetrack on Sunday. Attendance was up over 18 percent from 2011 figures, track officials said.
    Photo courtesy of Four Footed Fotos

  • The skies were gorgeous, the stands were packed and the horses were running as more than 32,000 fans enjoyed Mother's Day racing Sunday at Arlington Park. Track attendance is up significantly over 2011 figures for Opening Day, Kentucky Derby day, and Mother's Day.

      The skies were gorgeous, the stands were packed and the horses were running as more than 32,000 fans enjoyed Mother's Day racing Sunday at Arlington Park. Track attendance is up significantly over 2011 figures for Opening Day, Kentucky Derby day, and Mother's Day.
    Photo courtesy of Four Footed Fotos

  • The picnic and grass areas at Arlington Park got a workout Sunday when a crowd of more than 32,000 showed up to celebrate Mother's Day and watch the races.

      The picnic and grass areas at Arlington Park got a workout Sunday when a crowd of more than 32,000 showed up to celebrate Mother's Day and watch the races.
    Photo courtesy of Four Footed Fotos

  • Roses, as they have been for many years, were presented to mothers on Sunday at Arlington Park racetrack.

      Roses, as they have been for many years, were presented to mothers on Sunday at Arlington Park racetrack.
    Photo courtesy of Four Footed Fotos

 
By Daily Herald News Services

Under clear blue skies, attendance for the Mother's Day crowd Sunday at Arlington Park racetrack was 18 percent higher than in 2011, track officials report.

Track officials also reported double-digit gains for the previous weekend, May 4-5, which featured a strong Friday Opening Day crowd followed by an even larger fan base Saturday for its annual Kentucky Derby Party.

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The biggest crowd for the first two racing weekends at Arlington Park, however, was on Mother's Day when 32,137 showed up, marking an 18 percent increase from the 27,246 that attended in 2011.

While Friday's Opening Day on May 4 featured nine races and smaller fields, it still attracted a crowd of 9,307, roughly 23 percent higher than the 7,596 last year.

The following day saw Arlington Park host 23,085 fans, the largest crowd ever for Derby Day at Arlington Park. The Derby Day attendance was 23 percent better than the 18,779 fans attending a year ago.

"These first two weekends have been a great start to our 2012 season," said Arlington Park general manager Tony Petrillo. "It shows that the fans are enthusiastic about getting back to Arlington Park and we view this as a positive sign for the rest of the year. We can't wait to get back to racing this Wednesday. We have a great race card of full fields so we expect our momentum to continue."

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