SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Saratoga Race Course is expecting it’s busiest season yet and with more people coming to the area for horse racing, restaurants and bars, public safety officials are preparing for an increased presence during the track’s 40 day season.
After coming to an agreement with Gaffney’s following a string of violence on Caroline St., Jim Montagnino, Public Safety Commissioner, said people can expect to see an increased presence at the track and in downtown Saratoga.
“You see a police car, several police cars on Caroline Street you know there’s a presence there,” Montagnino said. “We have our officers on bike patrol and street patrol and also interacting with people you know that the city is being watched.”
Along with more officers on the street, trackgoers will see a new dog trained to sniff out potential dangers.
The dog is “cross trained in detecting not only explosives, ammunitions, but also drugs so he’ll be there to keep things safer,” Montagnino said.
The extra precautions are standard every year as more people come to the area. Prior to the pandemic, the track drew one million people to the city. Pat McKenna, Vice President of Communications for the New York Racing Association, said they are expecting a busy season with already strong sales prior to opening day.
“We’ve heard from downtown business community who have echoed that sentiment over the last two or three months, advance hotel reservations are strong, sales, restaurant reservations so it’s incredible important to the local economy in Saratoga,” McKenna said.
Montagnino is urging people to stay aware and if they see something, say something as they head up to the track this summer.