Aqueduct Reaccredited by NTRA Safety, Integrity Alliance

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced March 3 that Aqueduct Racetrack in New York City has earned reaccreditation from the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance.

Aqueduct, located in the borough of Queens since 1894, is part of the New York Racing Association franchise.

Aqueduct’s reaccreditation was the culmination of a lengthy process that began with the track's completion of an extensive written application and continued as the track hosted several meetings with alliance officials. An on-site review included inspections of all facets of the racing operations. Interviews were conducted with track executives, racetrack personnel, jockeys, owners, trainers, veterinarians, stewards, and regulators. The inspection team included Ron Jensen, DVM, former equine medical director for the California Horse Racing Board; Mike Kilpack, security and integrity consultant and past chairman of the Organization of Racetrack Investigators; Steve Koch, executive director of the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance; and Richard Lewis, former trainer and Northern California racing executive and current California Horse Racing Board steward.

Alliance certification standards address an extensive list of safety and integrity concerns within six broad areas: injury reporting and prevention; creating a safer racing environment; aftercare and transition of retired racehorses; uniform medication, testing and penalties; safety research; and wagering security.

Aqueduct received its initial accreditation in 2009, the alliance's first year. All accreditations and reaccreditations carry an effective period of two years.

"We are proud to have received a favorable report following the alliance's inspection of Aqueduct Racetrack," said Glen Kozak, NYRA vice president of facilities and racing surfaces. "We will continue to commit our efforts and resources to improve our standards on the behalf of all those who participate in, and enjoy, racing at Aqueduct as well as Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course."

Aqueduct is one of 23 racing facilities fully accredited by the alliance that together host 94% of Grade I stakes and attract more than 70% of North American pari-mutuel handle. The others are Belmont Park, Canterbury Park, Churchill Downs, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack, Golden Gate Fields, Gulfstream Park, Gulfstream Park West, Indiana Grand, Keeneland, Kentucky Downs, Laurel Park, Los Alamitos Race Course, Monmouth Park, Pimlico Race Course, Santa Anita Park, Saratoga Race Course, Suffolk Downs, Sunland Park, Turfway Park, and Woodbine.

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