THE AIKEN TRAINING TRACK ANNOUNCES THAT THE USAGE FEE FOR THE TRACK WILL BE SLASHED BY 50% FOR TRAINERS, AS COVID-19 HITS THE THOROUGHBRED RACING INDUSTRY ACROSS THE COUNTRY
April 1, 2020
Aiken, S.C. – The Executive Committee of the Aiken Training Track worked quickly on Monday afternoon, March 30, 2020, to cut in half the track’s usage fee for horses training on the mile and/or 5/8 mile track offered at the historic grounds. The monthly track usage fee of $200.00 per horse has been dropped to $100.00 per horse, at least through the month of April 2020.
“We want to help our loyal trainers at this time of economic uncertainty. We plan to watch over our monthly track usage fee with an eye to assisting our hard-working trainers as they try very hard to withstand the numerous changes in the racing business caused by this Coronavirus pandemic. Racing meets have been cancelled, important thoroughbred sales have been cancelled, even restrictions on where horses can ship have emerged, “said Bill Gutfarb, President of the Aiken Training Track and a member of the Executive Committee. “Owners, trainers and staff have been seriously impacted. We are trying to help them,” he continued.
At a track board meeting on Thursday, March 26, 2020, the purchase of a new John Deere 5100E Utility Tractor was approved, along with a new loader and fixed pallet fork. Jim Rhodes, head of the track’s maintenance program, spearheaded the tractor purchase and will make certain the new equipment is well used in perfecting the track’s outstanding surface.
“The Aiken Training Track is famous for its outstanding surface. My staff and myself are committed to keeping the same level of excellence at our track in these challenging times, “ Rhodes said. The Aiken Training Track is open during the summer months as well as the winter season. Owners and trainers are encouraged to send horses to Aiken now.
The 78th running of the Aiken Trials was held on Saturday, March 14, 2020. Five pony races and five trials were successfully run. Excellent examples of young horses on their way to becoming winners, as well as older horses took to the track with zest. Fans enjoyed the horse racing. During the Trials a famous gentleman from Canada and a long-time friend and owner who brought horses to train at the Aiken Training Track, Gus Schickedanz, was honored. The late Mr. Schickedanz became the 3rd inductee into the track’s Ambassador’s Club. He is remembered for his dedication to the sport of horse racing and to the Aiken Training Track in particular.
For more press information,
Contact – Helen Naylor
Member – Board of Directors