90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Dirt Vs. Synthetic Tracks – What’s Best For Horse Racing?

Running on Pimlico's dirt track in Maryland. (Matt Laslo/WEKU)

The Triple Crown events: the Kentucky Derby, Maryland’s Preakness and the Belmont stakes in New York, are run on dirt tracks.

Some in the horse racing industry want to end that tradition and lay down potentially safer synthetic tracks.

But with grandstands increasingly empty, critics say track owners are putting profits over safety.

With the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby coming up on Saturday, we’re taking a look this week at the horse racing industry in a series of stories produced for WEKU in Richmond, Kentucky. Today Matt Laslo reports on the dirt versus synthetics debate from the home of the Preakness.


Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • Pstudge

    The last 6 Keeneland spring meets have had no fatalities with a synthetic track.

  • Amused

    The piece is very interesting, but it either is not very timely or you are not aware that the Kentucky Derby is running this Saturday, not the Preakness.

  • MrKnowItAll

    Run them on dirt, run them on rubber, or put Nikes on them!  Until they fix the problem with the HORSE, wrecks are still going to happen!  Is it 50/50 or greater that we will see the curtain of death on Saturday?

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

July 29 12 Comments

U.S. ‘Border Crisis’ In A Global Context

Bill Frelick of Human Rights Watch says what the U.S. is seeing is dwarfed by the massive flow of refugees into other countries, such as Italy.

July 29 4 Comments

Iraq War Vet Returns To A Broken Country

Roy Scranton says what he found in Baghdad "shows the evidence of the truth of what we'd actually done."

July 28 5 Comments

Rob Reiner Reflects On Making Movies From ‘And So It Goes’ To ‘Princess Bride’

The actor and director has been making people laugh for decades.

July 28 4 Comments

New HBO Documentary ‘Love Child’ Looks At Gaming Addiction

"Love Child" tells the story of a South Korean couple whose baby starved to death while they cared for a virtual child.