Del Mar turf track widening approved

By Joe Tash

A long-planned widening of the turf track at the Del Mar Fairgrounds received approval from the board of directors of the 22nd District Agricultural Association on Tuesday, March 12, in an effort to improve track safety and put San Diego County in the running for the prestigious Breeder’s Cup horse racing event.

“This is a really big deal,” said board president Adam Day.

The board approved the project, which is budgeted at $3.7 million, on a unanimous vote.  Along with approving the project itself, the board also approved a “mitigated negative declaration,” an environmental document which spells out steps the district will take to minimize or eliminate potential environmental impacts from the project.

The California Coastal Commission also must approve the project, and that panel is expected to consider the turf track expansion at its meeting in April, said director David Watson.

The 22nd DAA operates the state-owned fairgrounds.  The property is home to the annual San Diego County Fair, as well as a horse racing meet operated by the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club.

The fairgrounds currently has two horse-racing tracks – the turf track and a polytrack, which runs outside the turf track.  The project approved by the board will widen the turf track by 25 percent.

Day said the primary purpose of the work is to improve safety for both horses and riders.  But widening the track will also allow more horses to compete in each race, improving the track’s betting “handle,” and bringing in more revenue to the district.

By widening the turf track, Del Mar will put itself in contention for hosting the Breeder’s Cup, an annual two-day horse racing event scheduled this year for Nov. 1 and 2 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia.

“It’s been described to me as bigger and better than the Super Bowl in terms of economic impact,” Day said of the Breeder’s Cup.

If the project receives approval from the Coastal Commission, work is scheduled to begin on Sept. 5, the day after this year’s Del Mar race meet ends, Josh Rubinstein, executive vice president with the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, told the board.

Construction is expected to take about eight months, and will be completed before the 2014 race meet begins in July, Day said.

The turf that will be used to increase the size of the turf track is now being grown in the Coachella Valley, Rubinstein said.

Related posts:

  1. Coast to Crest Trail project approved
  2. Track gets relief from state’s shift
  3. Track readies for marquee race
  4. Race season dates set
  5. ‘Opening Day at the Races’

Short URL:

Posted by Staff on Mar 13, 2013. Filed under Carmel Valley, Del Mar, News, Solana Beach, carmel valley. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply



Bottom Buttons 1

Bottom Buttons 2

Bottom Buttons 3

Bottom Buttons 4

Bottom Buttons 5

Bottom Buttons 6





  • Alumni and Advancement Center named for longtime supporters Larry and Cindy Bloch of Rancho Santa Fe
    The University of Rochester’s Alumni and Advancement Center in Rochester, N.Y. has been renamed the Larry and Cindy Bloch Alumni and Advancement Center in recognition of the couple’s support of the university and, in particular, its Advancement programs. In a ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 15, UR President Joel Seligman formally dedicated the center in honor of […]
  • RSF Association Board Biz: It’s fire season: Be prepared
    The Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District (RSFFPD) was officially formed in 1946, in the aftermath of a devastating fire that took place in 1943 and destroyed brush, farmland and homes from Rancho Bernardo through Rancho Santa Fe, all the way to Solana Beach and Del Mar. Today the Fire District spans 38 square miles and protects nearly 30,000 residents. W […]
  • Rancho Santa Fe couple lead way in helping those with thyroid disorders
    Few people may know that Graves’ disease is one of the most common autoimmune diseases afflicting Americans today. Fewer still may know that the only national non-profit dedicated to its patients is headquartered in Rancho Santa Fe. The Graves’ Disease and Thyroid Foundation, co-chaired by Rancho Santa Fe residents Kathleen Bell Flynn and Steve Flynn, has be […]