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Torn Over Tapeta

The first season of Woodbine Racetrack’s new Tapeta surface was completed on Dec. 4 and with it came a growing rumble of concern from some horsepeople about its injury record. By the end of an unusually hot summer and into the autumn months, complaints centred on a surface that was becoming too hard on the bottom, not enough ‘give’, resulting in what horsepeople believed to be an increase in breakdowns and other injuries such as bowed tendons. Statistically speaking, the number of on-track fatalities in 2016, during racing and training hours by the Dec. 4 closing were likely going to be less or the same as in previous years when the track was Polytrack, according to the Equine Database maintained by Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG). However, data on training injuries, collected by veterinarians, was not kept until this year so comparisons are impossible. “In general, I have had the same…

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