DAY 6/7: Crew Prepares To Replace Material Atop Laurel Surface

After additional compression tests on the base Aug. 26, the crew working on the renovation of the main track at Laurel Park Aug. 27 was preparing the cushion in advance of replacing the surface material.

The project—the first time in about 12 years the entire dirt track was taken down to its base, examined, and refreshed—began Aug. 21 and has remained on schedule thanks to daily dawn-to-dusk shifts and perfect weather for late August.

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DAY 5: Laurel Surface Renovation Enters Final Stages

The main-track renovation at Laurel Park continued Aug. 25 with double-checks on two of the larger areas in which the base required regrading, including one toward the outside of the surface just before the second finish line.

Maryland Jockey Club President Sal Sinatra said as repair work winds down, the goal remains to have the cushion back in place by Aug. 28 or Aug. 29.

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DAY 4: Laurel Track Renovation Remains On Schedule

Repair of portions of the base of the main track at Laurel Park continued Aug. 24, and it’s still expected surface material will be replaced the weekend of Aug. 26-27.

One of the locations that required a restoration of the base with limestone and mica chips is located just before the second finish line. The area had been worked on earlier this year but the patch didn’t hold.

Maryland Jockey Club President Sal Sinatra Aug. 24 told the Maryland Racing Commission he hopes the project is completed by Aug. 28. Training has been suspended since Aug. 21 to allow for the work, and the weather has been very cooperative thus far.

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DAY 3: Repair of Surface Base in Several Spots Begin at Laurel

Examination of the base of the main track at Laurel Park began the afternoon of Aug. 22 and resulted in the identification of five locations requiring re-grading.

After the surface material was scraped away, crews took measurements and found the inconsistencies in the grading, Maryland Jockey Club President Sal Sinatra said. Repairs began Aug. 23 and were expected to take a few days.

“They found five areas of concern, most of them on the outside of the track,” Sinatra said. “When I say the outside of the track I mean from the crown out.

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DAY 2: Weather A Big Help In Track Renovation Project

The track maintenance crew at Laurel Park Aug. 22 continued to remove the cushion on the main track with a goal of having the base exposed by the end of the day.

With a chance for stray thunderstorms later in the day and evening, work began earlier in the morning, Maryland Jockey Club President Sal Sinatra said. The forecast for the next week or so, however, calls for dry conditions.

“This might have been the perfect week to do this,” Sinatra said. “They started taking the dirt off Monday, and we brought in a third grader to speed up the process. I made sure they all understand the importance of getting the track fixed and back to the horsemen as quickly as possible.”

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DAY 1: Laurel Surface Renovation Begins As Planned

Renovation of the main track at Laurel Park began as planned Aug. 21 as equipment began stripping away the surface to get to the base.

Removal of the surface is expected to take two days, and replacement of it another two days. The length of the project will hinge on the examination of the base, drainage improvements, and the weather.

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