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Santa Anita Asphalt Track Base May Be Replaced

Friday, 30th May 2008

Also in California, replacement of the asphalt base "is the likely next step in on-going efforts to improve Santa Anita Park's synthetic surface," reported bloodhorse.com. Ian Pearse of Pro-Ride Racing Australia arrived at the track on Tuesday & "determined through preliminary tests that the asphalt base continues to drain ineffectually". Originally track management "had scheduled a 4-inch flooding of the Santa Anita surface on Thursday (early this morning Australian time) as a final drainage test before deciding upon a course of action"; however Pearse advised such a test "would be a total waste of time." Pearse explained: "I dug quite a few holes in the profile (surface) & filled them with water & 80-90% of them didn't drain at all, while the other 10% drained slowly. I could see that the asphalt layer wasn't draining." Pearse summed up: "I'm recommending removing the surface & putting in a brand new base. The options (for replacement) would be a porous asphalt base or a specialised grid layer." Santa Anita president Ron Charles (who is meeting Magna Entertainment chairman Frank Stronach before a final decision is made) added: "If we go with Ian's recommendations, we would probably close the track for 3 weeks at the beginning of the Del Mar meeting (which begins on July 16)."

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