Sportingbet Park close to re-opening

By: Mark Mazzaglia
January 7th, 2014

Sportingbet Park at Sandown is on track to resume racing on February 19 after undergoing a major track development over the last few months.

Paximadia won the 2013 G2 Sandown Guineas which was run at Caulfield this year.

Paximadia won the G2 Sandown Guineas which was run at Caulfield in 2013. Photo by Race Horse Photos Australia.

Melbourne Racing Club chairman Mike Symons inspected the new track this morning and is confident that the surface will be ready to go if a series of barriers at the end of January give it the all clear.

The Sandown track had been out of action since September forcing the Melbourne Racing Club to run its feature 2013  Spring Carnival Sandown Guineas meeting at Caulfield.

“It is in fantastic condition, it has a terrific cover of grass, we couldn’t be happier,” Symons told Racing Network.

“At the moment it would probably be rated a Good 1.5, it is quite firm, we’ve had some drying wind and warm weather.

“We are hoping to run about six to eight trials on it towards the end of the month, from there we should get approval from the stewards and then start racing again on Wednesday February 19.”

The Melbourne Racing Club is also planning major works for its Caulfield track to commence following the running of the 2014 Group 1 $2.5m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield in October.

While the track is closed over the Spring and Summer periods, its scheduled meetings will be split up between Sportingbet Park at Sandown and Moonee Valley with the anticipated re-opening to be in time for the running of the 2015 Group 1 $1m Sportingbet Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) in February.

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