Aqueduct Cancels Program After Two Races

Aqueduct abandoned its Jan. 27 racing program after the daily double as temperatures stalled in the teens and vicious winds made conditions on the racetrack unbearable.

Jockeys huddled up after the first race and decided to complete the second race before calling it a day.

"We wanted to work with management to get through the double," Aaron Gryder said. "It's very uncomfortable. It's very cold and windy. If it were this cold without the wind, I think we would be fine. It is somewhat dangerous."

Shaun Bridgmohan rode favored Lone Tree in the first race and said the wind played a role in her bearing out and blowing the clubhouse turn.

"She was getting out, but the wind kind of blew her," he said. "Then on the second turn I was inside of (Norberto) Arroyo and he bumped me because of the wind. Everyone was on the same page (about canceling the races)."

The Weather Channel Web site reported temperatures in Ozone Park at 14 degrees with a wind chill of 4 below zero.

Gryder said the grooms, who had been out in the cold walking horses for the second race while jockeys met, were considered in the decision to ride the second race.

"The grooms have been out in the cold all this time and they don't get rewarded like we do," he said after emerging from the meeting that set back post time for the second race by more than 15 minutes.

Racing is scheduled to resume Jan. 28 at Aqueduct. Forecasts call for temperatures to reach the low 20s by mid-afternoon, with wind chills starting at near zero and rising to 11 degrees.