Opening Day of racing is underway, despite high temps
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – The extreme heat has New York Racing Association officials keeping a close eye on weather conditions for Opening Day at the Saratoga Race Course, but as of now every race will go on as scheduled.
Friday temperatures are expected to hit the low to mid-90s, so NYRA will be taking additional precautions to ensure that horses and humans remain comfortable during the opening day.
Multiple veterinarians will be positioned throughout the horse paths, paddock, winner's circle and racetrack to carefully monitor all horses before and after each race.
Extra water hoses will be operated at various junctures during the horses' travel to and from the racetrack, including at the paddock and winner's circle where horses unsaddle after a race.
Personnel with buckets of ice will be positioned similarly around the racing facility where horses pass by.
Additional water will be provided to the jockeys' quarters to ensure that they remain well-hydrated.
Five-pound bags of ice will be available to patrons for purchase at selected concession outlets.
On Thursday Christopher Kay, President and CEO of NYRA said: "While we have every intention of running tomorrow as scheduled, we will, of course, stay in close contact with veterinarians, horsemen, riders, and state regulators tomorrow morning and throughout the day. The NYRA staff is accustomed to and adept at dealing with hot weather days at Saratoga. We anticipate a normal day of racing here tomorrow."
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