The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Feb. 21 that Sunland Park in Sunland Park, N.M., has earned re-accreditation from the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance.
The re-accreditation followed a complete review of all racing operations at the facility. Sunland Park received its initial accreditation in December 2010; all accreditations and re-accreditations are good for two years.
Sunland Park is the 18th 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 newly added to the Alliance's "Code of Standards" in 2011 and 2012.
The inspection team was comprised of veterinarian Ronald Jensen; racing official Richard Lewis; Mike Kilpack of the Organization of Racetrack Investigators; and Mike Ziegler, executive director of the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance.
Officials said best practices were identified in areas including fire safety planning and procedures; paddock safety protocols and procedures; security plan; security training; wagering security protocols, including simulcast sales contract language, and exclusion of pools when timing is non-verifiable; policy as a guest when excluded; timing display and synchronization on video broadcast and totalisator, cancel delay elimination, use of latest version of Inter Tote System Protocol; and wagering incident investigation protocols.
"Sunland Park was inspected during its current, live meeting," said Ziegler in a release. "The track exhibited a solid commitment to the safety and integrity of its racing and wagering operations. The work they've done with the New Mexico Racing Commission and their horsemen in meeting the minimum standards set forth in the Alliance Code demonstrate this commitment."
"I'm pleased that Sunland Park has earned re-accreditation from the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance," added Harold Payne, general manager of Sunland Park, in a statement. "Nothing is more important to us than the safety of our human and equine participants and the integrity of our racing product. I congratulate the many employees here who worked diligently to achieve this recognition."