Going is good as owners give thumbs up to new system at Perth Racecourse

© DC Thomson
Horses run the City of Perth Gold Cup Race, won by 'Beeves', on June 4 2017.

New state-of-the-art horse welfare equipment at Perth Racecourse has seen an increase in entries.

Since the site’s irrigation system was replaced over the winter, helping ensure the ground is in a consistent state, Scotland’s most northerly track has seen a 10% increase in field sizes over the five meetings to date, helped by a 50% reduction in the number of non-runners due to unsuitable going.

The racecourse purchased two new Briggs hosewheel irrigators, a variable speed pump system, and installed a main ring around the inner perimeter of the track.

Hazel Peplinski, chief executive at Perth Racecourse, described it as ‘beyond compare’ to the old system.

She said: “The irrigation system was something I was determined to implement upon my arrival, as the previous model was making the difficult job of producing consistent summer jumping ground almost impossible.

“Our track team work tirelessly in the temperamental Scottish weather to ensure that the optimum conditions are achieved for each meeting, and the significant drop in non-runners is very rewarding for everyone concerned.

“We have had a number of compliments from owners, trainers and jockeys on how much more consistent the ground is this season which is reassuring to hear.

As a racecourse that focuses on summer jumping we take horse welfare extremely seriously and try to communicate the going descriptions as accurately as possible in advance of each meeting. Without this trust it is less likely that Horsemen shall travel long distances with their horses to support us.”