This is a closeup of Polytrack, and I think it looks yummier than it must taste. Could almost pass for some sugary candy concoction. But the kickback at Woodbine has become such a concern that CEO David Wilmot told the Form that "It's broken."
Woodbine management met with Polytrack vendors Martin Collins and Keeneland on Wednesday to discuss what needs to be done to the surface. The current Polytrack has tended to separate and yield excessive kickback during cooler weather.The track is hoping to limit their loss of racing days to one while the surface is adjusted. Nonetheless, the march towards synthetics go on, as Arlington Park's installation of the surface is now under way. In a well-publicized spate of fatal injuries there last year, 22 horses lost their lives.
"It's the right thing for us to do as a business and the right thing for racing in the United States," [Arlington Park President Roy Arnold] said. "Our obligation was to look at alternatives (to the dirt surface) and we reached the conclusion that Polytrack had moved from a science experiment to a product that was ready for installation." [Cook County Daily Herald]- Slots at Hoosier and Indiana Downs took another step towards reality....or did it? The Indiana State Senate passed a bill that would allow VLT's at the state's two tracks, but it differs greatly from the version passed by the House. The latter would permit 2,500 machines at each track, and require them to each pay a $100 million fee. But the Senate version authorizes only 1,500 machines, and imposes a whopping fee of $400 million!
That would be the highest such fee charged anywhere in the country. [Larry Smallwood, chairman of the Indiana Horse Racing and Breeding Coalition] said revenue from the slots would barely cover the interest on the loans needed to pay the fee.
"It's just not workable at this point," Smallwood said. "Hopefully common sense or cooler heads will prevail down the road." [Louisville Courier-Journal]