In preparation for the 2021 summer meet at Saratoga Race Course, spring training will kick off this month in Saratoga Springs, but not at the usual location. Due to ongoing renovations at the Oklahoma Training Track, the first few weeks of spring training will be held at Saratoga Race Course.
Read the Latest About Spring Training in Saratoga
The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) today announced that Saratoga Race Course will officially open for spring training on Saturday, April 17, at 6:00am. Although the barn area at the Oklahoma Training Track will open to horsemen on Thursday, April 15, the Training Track won’t be open for riding until early May.
NYRA changed the typical training schedule because major renovations are still underway at the Oklahoma Training Track. The project, which started earlier this year, will result in:
- A completely reconstructed track featuring a limestone base
- A renovated surface layer and modernized drainage systems
- A wider track in most areas of the Training Track (widened by 10-14 feet)
- And a new inner rail with a rider protection system designed by Horsemen’s Track and Equipment
“The Oklahoma Training Track renovation is an investment in the future of Saratoga Race Course that reflects NYRA’s commitment to providing our athletes with the safest possible environment for training and racing,” said Glen Kozak, NYRA Senior Vice President for Operations and Capital Projects, in a press release.
When spring training opens on April 17, all personnel will be subjected to a daily temperature check prior to entering the property, and personnel working in support of training activities must provide a negative COVID-test or proof of full vaccination to access the property. This applies to local personnel and those arriving from other areas.
The 2021 summer meet at Saratoga will run from Thursday, July 15 through Monday, September 6. While current New York State COVID-19 protocols do not allow for spectators at racetracks, NYRA is working with the State to secure the requisite approvals to bring fans back to Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course.