ascot aug08
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Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Poly-Wood delayed**

(Woodbine press release)

Woodbine Entertainment Group today announced the first race on the new state-of-the-art Polytrack has been targeted for August 30.

“We expect to complete the installation of the Polytrack on top of the macadam (final sub-layer) by early next week,” said Chris Evans, VP of Thoroughbred Racing. “On the stretch turn, we had a problem with some stone, so we wanted to ensure it was in proper condition for when the paving starts.

“Paving will begin after the races tonight, as well as on Thursday, along with Friday and Saturday nights. As the macadam is put down, the Polytrack will be brought over and placed on top. From there, our track crew will maintain it and prep it for racing. The target date is August 30 with training taking place at least three to four days prior.”

Construction began in early July with racing action moving to the seven-furlong Standardbred racing oval to host the Thoroughbreds. Standardbred racing's summer meet is currently being held at Mohawk Raceway in Campbellville. The sport returns to Woodbine on October 9.

Polytrack is an entire system, encompassing a specially designed top layer that works in tandem with a unique vertical drainage structure. The top layer-comprised of silica sand, fibers and recycled materials- provides a soft cushion for the horse and rider. It is covered in a wax coating that allows water to flow freely through the top surface to the sub layers below and helps avoid a freezing or inconsistent racetrack, even in inclement weather.

The sub-layers include porous macadam and dense aggregate rock that provide a solid foundation while vertical drainage pipes carry water away from the track. Together, these elements provide a safer, more consistent racing surface compared to a conventional dirt track.

Woodbine is the second North American racetrack to install Polytrack as its main racing surface. Turfway Park, located in Northern Kentucky, installed Polytrack in August 2005.

(**Earlier interviews with Chris Evans had suggested August 23 would be the first day of racing over the Polytrack surface.)


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