12/09/2008 1:00AM

WinStar plans artificial strip


WinStar Farm in Versailles, Ky., plans to install a Polytrack surface on a combined seven-furlong track and uphill gallop, the surface's manufacturer announced Tuesday.

The manufacturer, Martin Collins Footings and Surfaces, markets the synthetic surface in North America jointly with the Keeneland Association.

WinStar horses already have been training over Polytrack at HighPointe Training Center in LaGrange, Ky., and the stable's three-year experience there was key to WinStar's decision to install Polytrack at WinStar Farm, according Elliott Walden, vice president of WinStar.

Other training centers that have Polytrack surfaces are Darley's Greentree facility in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., Pegasus Thoroughbred Training Center in Washington, and Kingfisher Farm in Maryland.

Polytrack is one of several synthetic all-weather surfaces - including Tapeta, Safetrack, Pro-Ride, and Cushion Track - that have become more widely used as horsemen and track managements seek solutions for equine injuries and surface maintenance costs.