Cushion Track

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Surface Switch: Going Hollywood?

Surface Switch: Going Hollywood?

The California Horse Racing Board, meeting in a brief emergency session by teleconference Jan. 8 following Santa Anita's canceled weekend Jan. 5-7, cleared the way for the Los Angeles Turf Club to move some or all of the 2008 winter/spring racing dates to Hollywood Park.

Rain Shuts Down Santa Anita Racing

Rain Shuts Down Santa Anita Racing

Santa Anita canceled racing Jan. 5, because the new Cushion Track is not draining properly. The track did an extensive renovation last month that was supposed to fix this problem. Five inches of rain have fallen, according to officials. More is expected tonight and could affect racing for the entire weekend.

Santa Anita Track Dilemma Not Over

Santa Anita Track Dilemma Not Over

Knee deep in controversy over drainage problems with Santa Anita's new synthetic racetrack and heavy rainfall expected this week, the company that installed the surface has acknowledged that the issue remains unresolved.

In Summation Takes El Conejo H.

In Summation Takes El Conejo H.

Waterford Stable's In Summation stalked a three-horse speed duel in a five-horse field and blew by late to win the Jan. 1 El Conejo Handicap (gr. III) in track-record time for 5 1/2 furlongs at Santa Anita Park.

Santa Anita Opens and Records Fall

Santa Anita Opens and Records Fall

The renovated Cushion Track at Santa Anita Park produced a track record at seven furlongs in the second race of the opening day card on Dec. 26. Bob Black Jack hit the wire in 1:20.37, .53 seconds faster than the previous mark set during the fall Oak Tree Association meet. While new surfaces always mean new records, the previous dirt record for seven furlongs set by Spectacular Bid in 1980 was 1:20.

Greg's Gold Favored for On Trust

Greg's Gold Favored for On Trust

Grade I winner Greg's Gold seeks his fourth victory of the season, but the 6-year-old gelding will have to carry top weight and deal with red-hot Unusual Suspect, a winner in three of his last four starts, in the $100,000 On Trust Handicap Dec. 22 at Hollywood Park.

Synthetic Surfaces: Special Report

Synthetic Surfaces: Special Report

Perhaps no other sport is as bound to tradition as racing Thoroughbreds. From the sheer length of its history, to the grand old venues in which it takes place, to the top-hatted and red-suited bugler calling the horses to post, racing loves its time-honored habits.

Commentary: Step Lively

By - Dan Liebman - In 2007, at least one Thoroughbred flat race was run at 129 different racetracks in North America (another 24 ran steeplechase races only). Of those racetracks, nine now have a synthetic track surface.

Greg's Gold Looks to Rebound

Greg's Gold Looks to Rebound

Already with a stakes win over the Hollywood Cushion Track this year, Greg's Gold will try to put a disappointing Breeders' Cup behind him when he faces five rivals in the $100,000 Vernon Underwood Stakes (gr. III) Dec. 2, a six-furlong sprint for 3-year-olds and up.

Oak Tree Meet Posts Sizable Gains in Handle, Field Size

Oak Tree Meet Posts Sizable Gains in Handle, Field Size

With strong out-of-state business leading the way, the Oak Tree Racing Association meet, which ended Nov. 4, posted significant gains in all sources mutuel handle over last year's figures. Out-of-state average daily handle was up 18% over last year and average daily total handle for the meet was up 9%.

MEC Selects Cushion Track for Santa Anita

After much deliberation, Santa Anita has chosen Cushion Track, the same surface as at Hollywood Park, for its synthetic track, it was announced May 23. The all-weather surface is to be installed this summer in time for the fall Oak Tree Racing Association meeting.

Bay Meadows May Defer Synthetic Track Decision

Bay Meadows Race Course, long rumored to be facing demolition in favor of redevelopment plans approved by the city of San Mateo, may seek an exemption from a California Horse Racing Board mandate to replace its existing dirt track with an artificial one by the end of 2007.

Cushion Track Praised as Hollywood Opens

California horsemen, who have been nearly unanimous in their praise of the new Hollywood surface in recent weeks of training, continued to give Cushion Track a thumbs up after the first day of racing at the fall meeting.

New 'Cushion Track' Attracts Out-of-Towners

Hollywood Park, which will debut its Cushion Track for racing when its fall meet begins Nov. 1, is expecting some out-of-town trainers to send horses after the Nov. 4 Breeders' Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs.

Lava Man Ships Early, Settles in at Keeneland

After shipping into Kentucky Oct. 10, the California-based Lava Man is adjusting well to his new surroundings at Keeneland Race Course as he preps for the $5- million Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge (gr. I) at Churchill Downs Nov. 4. According to trainer Doug O'Neill, the 5-year-old gelding settled in without a problem and is galloping daily over Keeneland's new Polytrack synthetic surface.

Arthur Tells Breeders He Wants Vets Accountable

Dr. Rick Arthur, the new equine medical director of the California Horse Racing Board, told a meeting of state horse breeders Sept. 22 that he plans to hold veterinarians accountable when trainers they advise are found in violation of horse medication rules.

Hollywood Park to Install Synthetic Surface

Hollywood Park expects to be the first California racetrack to run on a synthetic-racing surface. The Inglewood facility announced June 21 that it will begin work with Equestrian Surfaces of the United Kingdom to replace the existing main track at the conclusion of the spring/summer meet on July 16.

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