Trainers taking extra precautions to protect horses in hot conditions
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – This week at the Saratoga Race Course, the focus has been on keeping the stars of the show as cool and comfortable as possible.
On the backstretch of the track at Saratoga Race Course, trainers are paying close attention to the horses in this extreme heat.
Before and after the horse's race, they are hosed down with cool water. Trainers also will dump ice on the horses head to give them instant relief from the heat immediately following a race.
When they're back at the stables they're kept in the shade with fans on and ventilation windows open to keep the horses at a comfortable temperature. According to thermometers set inside the stables to monitor the heat, it's only 80 degrees compared to the schorching 90s outside the stables.
"Well I really think the horses are okay. It is very warm. But the fact that it's been warm for several days it gives the horses an opportunity to acclimate, they're very well-conditioned, horses," said NYRA Racing Analyst Richard Miguore.
Paul Holthus has spent his entire life around horses and was certified as a trainer when was 18. He said these horses are like family.
"There's nothing like it, anytime, it's not like going to work you know, you're getting to do something you love every day, and a lot of people don't understand it"
That's why ensuring the horses are able to beat the heat on this hot opening day is essential.
"Take precautions as similar as a person, make sure their electrolytes and fluids are kept up everyday, whenever they're racing in summer weather."
Trainers are still keeping an eye out for signs of exhaustion.
"They get a little bit clumsy, they're not putting their feet down as precise as they normally might," said Miguore.
That's why caution is key, and for third generation horse trainer Paul Holthus -- the love he has for his horses is what drives him to ensure they are well taken care of.
"These horses are worth hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars, and there would be no way that anyone would put them in jeopardy," he said.
He added that if a horse looks exhausted, it will be pulled from the race to keep it safe.
"There have been days in the past where they have to
use good judgment and they've canceled races.
Depending on the heat, when it gets to 100, 105 degrees and it's just a
stagnant kind if heat. On days like
today for opening day, it was 90 it was hot but with the breeze, I think it was
safe for them to run," said trainer Carlos Martin.
Experts tell NEWS10 the consistent 90 degree days actually
helped get the horses acclimated and prepared for race day.
Local News <a href="http://www.wten.com/category/173731/-local-news">More>></a>Local NewsMore>>
ALBANY, N.Y. – A Nobel Peace Prize nominee will be in Albany on Saturday. Kathy Kelly of Voices for Creative Nonviolence will rally in Townsend Park from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Kelly is a peace activistMore >>
A Nobel Peace Prize nominee will be in Albany on Saturday.More >>
ALBANY, N.Y. – This weekend marks the final weekend of skating at the Empire State Plaza ice rink. The NYS Office of General Services has announced that Sunday will be the final day of skating for theMore >>
This weekend marks the final weekend of skating at the Empire State Plaza ice rink.More >>
ALBANY, N.Y. – The Ninth Annual Hannaford Kidz Expo is Saturday. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Empire State Plaza, the annual Kidz Expo will be held, courtesy of Hannaford. The Hannaford Kidz Expo offersMore >>
The Ninth Annual Hannaford Kidz Expo is Saturday.More >>
RENSSELAER, N.Y. – Students from 36 schools in three counties will come together on Saturday for the Region 4 Odyssey of the Mind Tournament. From 8:10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday at the RensselaerMore >>
Students from 36 schools in three counties will come together on Saturday for the Region 4 Odyssey of the Mind Tournament.More >>
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – A fire broke out at St. Anthony's Church Friday evening. The call for the fire at 331 Seward Place came in around 6:30 p.m. The fire started in the basement and spread upward causingMore >>
A fire broke out at St. Anthony's Church Friday evening.More >>
TROY, N.Y. – A local church is giving a gun away in a raffle, and a politician has received threats for participating in the event. Grace Baptist Church in Troy will be giving a gun away in a raffle onMore >>
A local church is giving a gun away in a raffle, and a politician has received threats for participating in the event.More >>
SOUTH GLENS FALLS N.Y. – The 37TH Annual South High Marathon Dance kicks off tonight at 7 p.m. in the South Glens Falls High School gym. The Marathon Dance has been around for decades, starting with onlyMore >>
The 37th annual South High Marathon Dance kicked-off Friday. More >>
TROY, N.Y. – A fire broke out at the Red Front restaurant in Troy Friday evening. The call for the fire came in just after 6 p.m. The fire started in the attic of the Division Street eatery. The restaurantMore >>
A fire broke out at the Red Front restaurant in Troy Friday evening.More >>
ALBANY, N.Y. – The University at Albany Police Department is warning the school community about an e-mail scheme circulating various campuses around the country. The e-mail scheme contains threateningMore >>
The University at Albany Police Department is warning the school community about an e-mail scheme circulating various campuses around the country.More >>
EAST GREENBUSH, N.Y. – A 19-year-old was arrested and charged Friday for having sexual relations with a minor. An investigation by the East Greenbush Police Department determined Jared Watts had sexualMore >>
A 19-year-old was arrested and charged Friday for having sexual relations with a minor.More >>