Veteran track maintenance specialist Richard Tedesco has taken the reins as track superintendent at Del Mar in anticipation of the 2010 racing season, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club has announced.
Tedesco, who currently serves as track superintendent for Santa Anita Park, brings more than 46 years of experience in racetrack maintenance to his new post, covering dirt, turf and engineered surfaces on racetracks and training centers around the world. He will continue his work at Santa Anita and Oak Tree in addition to overseeing Del Mar's Polytrack surface.
"Richard is as good as it gets in this business," said DMTC president and general manager Joe Harper, "and we're lucky to be able to share him with Santa Anita. He'll bring continuity to the racing scene in Southern California and he's highly respected by everyone he interacts with — be they management or horsemen or anyone else involved with doing what's right for horses and riders."
Tedesco worked for 37 years at Hollywood Park in Los Angeles in all phases of track maintenance, including the role of track superintendent, a position he also held at nearby Los Alamitos Race Course. He has headed the track maintenance crew at Santa Anita since 2007, helping the Los Angeles oval through its transition from dirt to Cushion Track to its current Pro-Ride engineered surface. In that capacity, he oversaw the flawless track care and safety record of the two most recent Breeders' Cups held at the Oak Tree-at-Santa Anita meeting.
Besides his local work, the California native has taken on assignments building and maintaining racetracks and training centers around the country and the world, including such far-flung outposts as Saudi Arabia and the Mediterranean island of Cyprus.
Tedesco will replace Steve Wood, who has worked in track maintenance at the seaside oval since 1989. Wood's assignments at Fairplex Park, the California Fair Circuit and at tracks and training facilities worldwide were cited as elements in his transition.
"Nobody worked harder than Steve Wood and we thank him for all his fine efforts at Del Mar over the years," Harper noted. "Losing a good man like him makes it all the more important that we were able to bring someone like Richard Tedesco on board."
SOURCE: Del Mar Thoroughbred Club release