Racing Biz interviews Peterson about track surface safety

Mick Peterson, a University of Maine professor of mechanical engineering and executive director of the Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory, was quoted in a Racing Biz article about the surfaces and safety of horse racetracks. At the sixth Grayson-Jockey Club Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit in Kentucky, Peterson presented an overview of his work, then moderated a discussion on the maintenance of several track surfaces, according to the article. Peterson, who has been studying racetrack surfaces for nearly 10 years, says when it comes to horses breaking down on tracks, the issue isn’t the type of surface the animal is running on, but how consistent those surfaces are. “I look at it as the job of the track supervisor to reduce musculoskeletal injuries in horses,” Peterson said, adding the key is data collection and monitoring. He stressed the importance of regularly collecting data on the racing surface, then using that data to increase its consistency, thereby reducing the likelihood of equine injury, the article states.