One of the benefits that the mandated synthetic tracks were supposed to provide were bigger fields. But it’s becoming increasingly more difficult for proponents of the artificial surfaces to use that argument after looking at the sizes of fields recently at Hollywood Park.
Last week, there were 42 races run at the Inglewood oval and almost half — 20 — included fields of seven or less horses. Six races last week included five-horse fields.
The jury is also still out on whether these synthetic surfaces are safer for the horses. There were two more fatalities on Hollywood Park’s Cushion Track on Saturday, and Fil’s Regent broke down after Sunday’s ninth race shortly after the wire.