Woodbine in Ontario, Canada, has been re-accredited by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Safety and Integrity Alliance, officials announced April 2. The track begins its live Thoroughbred meet April 6.
The re-accreditation followed a complete review of all racing operations at the facility. Woodbine received its initial alliance accreditation in March 2010; all accreditations and re-accreditations are good for two years.
Woodbine is the 14th alliance-accredited racetrack to earn re-accreditation. The on-site review included inspections of all facets of the racing facility, with special attention paid to areas that were added to the alliance code of standards in 2011-12.
The inspection team included Dr. Ronald Jensen, Mike Kilpack of the Organization of Racetrack Investigators, racing official Richard Lewis, and alliance executive director Mike Ziegler.
Officials said best practices were identified in areas including pre-race veterinary examinations; post-race veterinary examinations; shoeing and hoof care; safety helmet and safety vest use; padded starting gate; catastrophic injury protocols and procedures; infectious disease management; fire safety planning and procedures; paddock safety protocols; veterinary care; uniform medication rules and testing; testing for anabolic steroids; out-of-competition testing; security plan and training; random inspections of test barn; apprentice jockey qualification; physical exams for jockeys; and wagering security protocols.
“Woodbine’s favorable report comes as no surprise given the high level of commitment to safety and integrity the track demonstrated when first accredited two years ago,” Ziegler said.
“All of us at Woodbine are exceedingly proud to have earned this re-accreditation,” said Steve Koch, vice president of Thoroughbred racing at Woodbine. “Safety for horse and rider and the integrity of our product has always been top priority at Woodbine.”