Churchill Downs Inc. (CDI) has announced an investment of $5.6 million to replace the current Polytrack synthetic surface at Turfway Park with a Tapeta synthetic track in time for the 2020-21 meet at the Florence, Ky., facility.
The removal of the current surface will begin at the conclusion of the current Turfway meet on Mar. 28, with installation to be completed by the next opening day on Dec. 2.
Comprised of silica sand, wax, and fibers that simulate the root structure of turn, Tapeta has been proven to perform exceptionally well in heavy rainfall and winter weather consistent with Turfway’s racing conditions.
Turfway will become the fourth track in North America to have a Tapeta surface. The others are the CDI-owned Presque Isle Downs in Pennsylvania, Golden Gate Fields in California, and Woodbine in Ontario, Canada.
The Tapeta track installation is one component of CDI’s investment that will make way for development of Turfway Park Racing & Gaming, an up to $150 million state-of-the art live and historical Thoroughbred racing facility.
“The agreement with Tapeta is the first of many exciting initiatives to come for Turfway,” said Kevin Flanery, President of Churchill Downs Racetrack and Turfway Park. “By partnering with Tapeta to provide the safest racing conditions for Turfway’s winter meets, we will be able to deliver one of the key elements supporting our goal of bringing a first-class racing product to Northern Kentucky.”