- We've been concerned about the weather forecast for Monmouth this weekend; and while that outlook has brightened just a bit, any concern for track conditions of course pale in comparison to what's going on in Southern California. We'd gladly turn the approaching rainy weather system around and send it back west to replace the hot, dry winds that are fanning the flames. Del Mar racetrack is being used as an evacuation area, even as surrounding communities, including Solana Beach, where the Head Chef and I stayed this past summer, are being evacuated. A reader from the area wrote me last night that the fires are around ten miles from that coastal area. We of course hope that the firefighters gain control of the situation, and that the loss of property everywhere is stemmed.
Horse owners from around the area have been flocking to the track, and the 2400 stalls are now filled. As many as 300,000 horses live in the county, and when people flee from the fires, so do the horses. [SignOnSanDiego]
- Aqueduct opens on Wednesday, and I almost fell off my chair when I read about 400,000 square feet of freshly painted halls, a completely made-over box-seat area, and a new simulcast room. [DRF] Wow. Renovations at the Big A. A new era must indeed be on the way. Sounds like they've been working on the track as well.
"The track this summer and fall has been terrific," [Richard Violette] said. "It's been very consistent; it's had a lot of life to it. Most mornings you can't hear them gallop over it."