New York Racing Association to consider all-weather tracks

New York Racing Association to consider all-weather tracks

Research aims to assess how different track surfaces affect horse injuries.

US.- The New York Racing Association has announced the establishment of a committee to investigate the possibility of adopting all-weather surfaces across. The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority, the federally mandated body overseeing the sport since 2022, had called for the investigation after a series of horse deaths last year.

David O’Rourke, president and CEO of NYRA, said the committee will consider implications from weather and temperature to betting. Keeneland’s Gatewood Bell, Breeders’ Cup’s Drew Fleming, 1/ST Racing’s Craig Fravel, and Del Mar’s Josh Rubinstein, alongside others, serve on the committee.

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Based on statistics from the Equine Injury Database, fatalities on synthetic surfaces are approximately half as frequent as those on turf and only a third as common as those on dirt tracks. The NYRA is in the process of building a 1-mile synthetic-surface track at Belmont Park. The track will use Tapeta, a blend comprising silica sand, wax and fibres. The mixture is engineered to replicate the root structure found in turf surfaces. Similar surfaces are already in use at Gulfstream Park in South Florida and other racetracks. In 2022, NYRA introduced a Tapeta pony track at Belmont Park.

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New York Racing Association the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority