Ride sharing proves to be Uber-popular at racetrack – New York News

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Uber driver Mike Burke starts his shift in Schenectady, his hometown, and goes where the riders take him. 


He usually ends up at Saratoga Race Course. He was there Wednesday afternoon.

“Business is really good,” he said, leaning back against his car with his Uber phone app open. “I think it’s a good service for customers. They like it. Even coming from Broadway, they’re just happy not to have to walk over here — not to have to find parking. They can drink what they want and not worry about getting back, taking that chance of driving.”

He said track-goers were reluctant to hail a cab before ride sharing came to town.

“Cabs were taking advantage of people,” he said. “I hate to say that, but that’s what happened. That’s the main complaint I’ve gotten since day one.”

Uber, the New York Racing Association’s official ride-sharing service, has proven popular around the racetrack in its first year of business in upstate New York — enough so that NYRA had to change the marked pickup and drop-off location on Frank Sullivan Place, near Gate 7. The narrow road was congested with traffic, with the high number of people hailing Uber rides causing gridlock during opening weekend — “It was just crazy,” Burke said.

“Due to the popularity of ride-sharing services on opening weekend, NYRA has moved the dedicated Uber zone to a location that will lead to faster pickups and drop-offs and will be an added convenience for the fans,” NYRA spokesman Pat McKenna said.

UberNewLocation_ELM08.jpg

On Wednesday, drivers and riders were notified about the new Uber docking area — the…

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