Study Says 2004 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships Helped Generate $47.4 Million in New Economic Activity for Texas

The 21st running of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships - horse racing's foremost international event staged last October at Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie - helped generate $47.4 million in new economic activity for Texas, according to a study released by Terry L. Clower, Ph.D. and Bernard L. Weinstein, Ph.D. of the University of North Texas.

The study, entitled "Economic and Fiscal Impacts of the 2004 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships," stated that almost 46% of the 53,717 in attendance for the Breeders' Cup hailed from outside of Texas, including visitors from more than 40 states and countries on four continents. Out-of-state visitors and organizations spent $20.45 million for lodging, food and beverages, retail merchandise and other entertainment during their Breeders' Cup stay, which averaged 2.9 nights in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

"Staging a prestigious event such as the Breeders' Cup clearly demonstrates what we can accomplish when we all work together to benefit the state's economy," said Lone Star Park President Corey Johnsen. "Texas received an excellent return on its investment and gained priceless international exposure."

Spending at the Breeders' Cup - a traveling year-end international showcase of horse racing's greatest stars in eight championship races with purse money totaling $14 million -- helped generate $47.4 million in new state economic activity and increased labor income by $16.8 million. It was also estimated that state tax revenues for Texas increased by $2.059 million.

"Texas is currently in the midst of its 79th legislative session and state legislators are exploring the idea of installing Video Lottery Terminals at Texas racetracks, which would make our purse levels as good as any racetrack in North America," Johnsen said. "With world-class horse racing in Texas year-round, we believe we could attract tens of thousands of horse racing fans and tourists for major racing events like the Breeders' Cup several times a year. Plus, we'd be able to create billions in economic impact, thousands of new jobs and valuable new tax revenue for Texas."

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