Green, Green Grass: Fair Grounds Busy Restoring Turf Course
Track maintenance crews have been busy for the past several weeks at the Fair Grounds repairing and restoring the turf course. The racetrack, which concluded its meet March 31, suffered through one of the wettest seasons of the last 25 years, which resulted in the cancellation of numerous turf races throughout the meet.
In a meeting held June 24, Fair Grounds officials updated the Louisiana Racing Commission the progress of restoring the turf course, and what work had been done so far. According to the Daily Racing Form, track officials have begun planting a tougher strain of Bermuda grass, which is just one of the recommendations made by surface expert Mick Peterson, who has been overseeing the work.
One of the first things track crews did was to scrape about 1 1/2 inches of sediment that had built up along the inner five feet of the turf course. Beach sand was then brought in and put down, and now the area is being seeded.
“We're in planting mode right now,” Eric Halstrom, vice president and general manager of the racetrack said. “We scraped off the inside five feet, and the course looks like a field that's ready to be planted. The good news is it's easy to grow grass in New Orleans with the heat and humidity, and we're ahead of schedule.”
Read more in the Daily Racing Form