A “pop up” track for Sydney Harbour Bridge?

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A Victorian horseracing track will be revamped with its own turf after a new fill of asphalt – as elsewhere a “pop-up” track is floated for Australia’s most iconic overpass.

Alex Fraser Group will soon carry out works at Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse to provide sustainable solutions to the track redevelopment.

Working with the Victoria Racing Club’s principal contractor, T&L James & Son, Alex Fraser Asphalt will initially profile 10,000 tonnes (correct weight) from the track.

The profiled material will then be stockpiled for use in the new track, providing the most sustainable outcome for the project. The existing asphalt under the track will then be pulled up and recycled.

An open graded asphalt will then be laid. This porous asphalt mix is formulated to provide large voids (in excess of 20 per cent) to provide better drainage and improve the safety for horses and riders. Once the asphalt is laid, the profiled soil and turf will be layered on top.

“We’re very happy to be working with T&L James and Son again, on such an interesting project,” Alex Fraser’s profiling manager Andrew Barbara said. “It’s great to hear from our customers that we’re winning their jobs because of our customer service, quality and reliability.”

Racing on iconic landmarks

Flemington Racecourse isn’t the only iconic piece of turf to be recycled within Australia. It might seem implausible but Sydney Harbour Bridge could potentially hold a race meeting. Racing NSW is reportedly set to meet with representatives of English events company City Racing in the next couple of months to discuss the possibility.

Peter Phillips, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, has been planning the street-racing concept for the past couple of years. He had the idea after staging an equestrian event on a similar surface on Horse Guards Parade in London.

He told BBC News that the event demonstrated how safe “pop-up” conditions for horses in a competitive environment could be installed and removed within three days.

Racing NSW is discussing the possibility of a Sydney Harbour Bridge race meeting. This would feature a synthetic paletted “pop-up” racing surface, topped with a thick layer of sand. Image courtesy of The Age.

Racing NSW is discussing the possibility of a Sydney Harbour Bridge race meeting. This would feature a synthetic paletted “pop-up” racing surface, topped with a thick layer of sand. Image courtesy of The Age.

Working with equine surface manufacturers Andrews Bowen, a successful trial was held at Aintree racecourse in November 2018.

A special synthetic surface would be laid on the streets, topped with a thick layer of sand to withstand the weight of thoroughbreds racing at speed.

“The surface has been rigorously tested and the feedback from jockeys and trainers has been positive,” Phillips told the BBC. “We are dealing with horses who are athletes and injuries happen but we have to make sure we put all the checks and balances in place.

“Equine safety is paramount. We have a veterinary advisory board and a gold standard welfare framework.”

Phillips said the track, surface, sub-layer and railings would all require sanctioning from the British Horseracing Authority.

Source, Images & More: https://www.quarrymagazine.com/

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