GRANTS PASS, Ore., May 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Grants Pass Downs, Oregon's premier horse racing track, has been awarded a $165,200 safety grant from the Oregon Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association to enhance its already high standard of racing. The funds will be used for a series of specific projects that extend the track's commitment to creating a secure environment for all horses, riders, trainers, staff and spectators.
"On behalf of Grants Pass Downs, I'd like to express our deep appreciation to the OTOBA for its vote of confidence and its support in ensuring our enterprise can continue providing the safest racing environment for competitors and spectators," said Randy Evers, president of Grants Pass Downs. "This grant will be instrumental in completing several projects integral to maintaining our excellent racing venue."
OTOBA's grant will enable Grants Pass Downs to integrate new chain-link fencing, styrofoam break away distance markers, sand for racing surfaces and a 10-foot safety buffer at its facilities, as well as acquire a telescopic boom for safety mitigation along the chute. Given the immediate availability of funds, Grants Pass Downs is commencing with all planned projects and anticipates completion by the middle of May.
The new initiatives underway complement steps the track has already taken to ensure the welfare of riders and horses, such as the installation of a state-of-the-art safety rail, upgraded track surfaces for improved racing conditions and new equipment to maintain it. Grants Pass Downs celebrated its inaugural commercial meet in fall 2019, carding 123 races with nearly 900 horses competing and concluding with an excellent safety record.
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Located at the Josephine County Fairgrounds, Grants Pass Downs has hosted live pari-mutuel horse racing since 1968 and is now home to the largest race meet in the state of Oregon. More information about Grants Pass Downs can be found at www.gpdowns.com.