06/10/2014 2:35PM

Los Alamitos improvements nearing completion ahead of July meet


Los Alamitos has expanded its track from five furlongs to one mile.

Capital improvements continue at Los Alamitos in advance of the track’s July Thoroughbred meeting.

On the front side, the walking ring has been expanded about 100 feet into the track apron to accommodate a remodeled winner’s circle and to allow more people, and horses, into the area when horses are being paraded before a race. The new winner’s circle will have two tiers to allow more participation in winner’s circle photos.

In addition, the grandstand area adjacent to the Vessels Club restaurant on the second floor has been remodeled with a standing viewing area that will offer an excellent vantage point of the Thoroughbred track that was expanded from five furlongs to a mile last winter.

Other improvements on the front side include an upgrade of the television system to high-definition, and a remodeling of bathrooms in the grandstand.

On the backstretch, the construction of two barns is nearly complete on property that was previously used as a maintenance yard for tractors and water trucks. The receiving barn has been demolished to provide space for additional barns, with the receiving barn relocated to another area of the stables.

The new barns will increase permanent capacity for Thoroughbreds from the current level of 500 to 700, according to Brad McKinzie, who directs the track’s Thoroughbred operation. Another 150 horses will be housed in portable stalls that will be constructed closer to the start of the race meeting, McKinzie said.

The July meeting will have eight days of racing on a Thursday-through-Sunday basis.

Joe Quillen More than 1 year ago
I'm wondering if the turn for the original 5/8 of a mile race track will be an issue. The only track that I know of that had a main track configuration like that was old Liberty Bell in Philly which closed in the early to mid 80s. At old Liberty Bell, they ran 5/8 for harness and a mile for thoroughbreds from what I researched.
Walter More than 1 year ago
I will guess that Los Al will pick up more dates as years go by. SA doesn't need to run through the end of June, it's just too hot in Arcadia that time of year. Look for for Los Al to start their meet in June in the future.
Sol Rivera More than 1 year ago
Los Al has one major advantage over Santa Anita AND Del Mar. Lights at Night. It would be no surprise to see Los Al break all records regarding night racing in So Cal History. Mr. Stronach, Please consider installing lights at SA Park. Once the heat stets in, you will be glad you did.
David Medina More than 1 year ago
The Thoroughbred meeting will be run during the day; no?
Joe Quillen More than 1 year ago
Yes. The track surface that was just installed doesn't have lights right now (I think).
Saratogafan More than 1 year ago
The configuration (minus the palm trees) looks a lot like the old Green Mountain Park in Vermont. GM was a hybrid harness/thoroughbred track which had the inner turn for its harness meet and the extended part of the track for their thoroughbreds. GM had a unique 13/16 mile circumference for the outer loop.
Freddy Columbo More than 1 year ago
Saratogafan, you bring back great memories as I was a great Green Mountain fan ! It was a beautiful track near Saratoga making it easy for many doubleheader during August ! The Rooney's ruined GM ! I hope Los Alamitos is a huge success !
Rich Ransom More than 1 year ago
I first went to GM with my father in 1965. Had a "live" twin double ticket (payoff of $2,200) the next year but my horse ran 4th in the last leg.I remember Phil Ernst was always the top jock.
Steven Merrill More than 1 year ago
It was 99 miles from Middlebury Vermont (where I went to college) to the north parking lot at Green Mountain. I made the trip often. The return trip was tough. Since Green Mountain often ran at night, I wouldn't get back until 1:30 or 2 in the morning. That track was my education as a horseplayer. I loved the place.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Get ready for next year when the Los Al Derby is renamed "The California Chrome". Sounds appropriate to me.
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
why??? a lot of horses have won the 1st 2 legs
Walter More than 1 year ago
Because the Los Al Derby has no history or heritage yet & it can easily be renamed. CC has been based at Los Al & they would be smart to tie their wagon to him. Why did Hollywood name a race for Swaps?
Joe Quillen More than 1 year ago
That would basically be the same thinking as when Parx created a race on Labor Day in honor of Smarty Jones when they moved the PA Derby to the end of September. You have a point, Walter.
1971 Whippet More than 1 year ago
I think they should change the name of Vessels, in honor of the owners of California Chrome.
Sol Rivera More than 1 year ago
F that
Sol Rivera More than 1 year ago
CC's owners are just about done. Or at least half of them are.
Bill Bloom More than 1 year ago
So down folks. The Vessels family has done more for racing in California than anyone, save possibly the Harris family. It would be a sacrilege to change the name. Please do not shown your lack of knowledge of California racing's glorious past!
Michael Zeisler More than 1 year ago
no doubt that all the improvements are great what seems like a lot of work for Sofew racing dates
Whoopers Cat More than 1 year ago
A desperate track will do desperate things :(
John More than 1 year ago
They are still a MAJOR Quarterhorse (3-4 $1 million+ stakes/futurities) track that runs all year. I believe the Quarterhorses run 51 weeks (3 days/wk) each year.
John Smith More than 1 year ago
This is great news...now California Chrome can take on all challengers at that track and not fear losing...while his classy owner enjoys a nice cozy reserved seat at the bar....a win/win situation for all.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Yep, take a shot at a horse who won the SA Derby, Ky Derby & Preakness. Three G1 wins in 6 weeks. What did he do so wrong? Ignorant comment
Sol Rivera More than 1 year ago
The shot was taken at his owner who had a MAJOR MELTDOWN when things did not go his way. CC distance yourself from steve before it is too late. Run CC run!!!
gus stewart More than 1 year ago
Hey allred, Have you been losing enough money for the last what 5 -10 years or more. You have a window of opportunity to maybe show a profit if that really matters to you dont know. Let me or anyone else set up Friday and sat night thoroughbred racing at your facility. I will make that place a party where people in cypress and other close cities want to go for the two weekends you have. Then next year you get many more days and make your track the place Santa Anita wants to be, no homes around you no young clubs or restaurants in Cypress worth a dime and there you have it. Its where young crowds want to go in the future!!!!!!
John More than 1 year ago
Los Al runs full fields of thoroughbred races , I wonder if they will card the cheaper races , $2500-$5000 during the meet . Be interesting to see some quick horse going 5 furlongs. Its looking nice, its the longest stretch in North America .
adam d More than 1 year ago
I imagine they will continue to run the 4.5 Furlong 2500-5K claimers at night.
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
Longest DIRT stretch. Wdb has longest turf stretch