Ruidoso Downs Racetrack Prepares for 2017 Season

Improvements to the grandstand and racing surface will greet fans and horsemen this year.

Edited press release

New paint is being applied to areas of the grandstand at Ruidoso Downs Racetrack, which opens its 2017 meet on May 26. PHOTO: Ty Wyant

Improvements to both the grandstand and the racing surface will be ready for the opening of Ruidoso Downs’ summer season on May 26.

The first two programs will be dominated by 350-yard trials for the $1-million Ruidoso Futurity (G1). The 60-day season ends on Labor Day, September 3, with the 59th running of the 440-yard, $3-million All American Futurity (G1), American Quarter Horse racing's richest and most prestigious race.

Ruidoso Downs' grandstand improvements include new box seats on the lower level along with painting in the box seat area and the All American Turf Club.

“We’re always looking for ways to improve the Ruidoso Downs’ experience,” said vice president of operations Leonard Turano. “These improvements will be well-received by our patrons. It’s for them.”

Additional material has been added to the Ruidoso Downs racing surface, and the safety rail between the Quarter Horse track and the Thoroughbred tracks has been replaced.

“Safety for the jockeys and horses is always the highest of priorities at Ruidoso Downs,” said vice president of race track maintenance Les Nichols. “These upgrades speak to the dedication of everybody at Ruidoso Downs for safe racing.”

The schedule of events before the season starts:

April 17           Barn area open for stall setup
April 22           Job fair
April 24           Barn area open for horses
April 28           Track open
May 1             Quarter Horse gates set
May 1             Entries for training races
May 8-10        Training races
May 15           Thoroughbred gate set
May 19           Entries taken for Ruidoso Futurity trials
May 21           Entries taken for Ruidoso Derby trials

AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHA Racing on Twitter, "like" Q-Racing on Facebook, and visit www.aqha.com/racing.