Jockeys Quarters receive upgrades

Indiana Grand has seen numerous upgrades over the past few years, but sometimes it’s the ones that aren’t as noticeable that make the biggest impact. Several additions and upgrades have been added to the Jockey’s Quarters, both inside and out, that will create a better working atmosphere for everyone.

The Silks Room received a new industrial washing machine that will greatly assist Silks Attendant Randi Fowler. The machine has a capacity of 45 pounds and two new industrial dryers were also installed to quickly dry silks, saddle towels, and other laundry produced daily to create a racing program. A concrete pad inside the silks room was poured to support the large machines and new plumbing and a vent system were also implemented. The old standard washing machines were retained to add support to specialty items.

“The new washing machine and dryers will reduce the wash time by half,” said Cahill. “The dryers are also equipped with sensors. Once the load is dry, it will shut down automatically, which is a cost saving measure. The old machines will also provide increased efficiency on busy days.”

Also, for the first time in the 22-year history of pari-mutuel racing in the state of Indiana, the jock’s room has a female valet. Brittany Waugh joined the staff of valets for the 2016 season and has been placed in the rotation to assist in saddling horses in the paddock and coordinating equipment for jockeys. Waugh, a former assistant trainer for both Marvin Johnson and Randy Klopp, has a long history working with horses and brings a lot of knowledge to her new position. A new work station has been added inside the jockey’s quarters for her to utilize for preparation during the races.

Another new face inside the jockey’s quarters is a trio of massage therapists from “Touch of Health” located in Shelbyville. One of the technicians will be on hand each day during racing to provide massage services for the jockeys to ensure they are ready to race.

The Paddock has also seen a few enhancements. Nancy Holthus, on-air paddock analyst, has received a new location for her paddock shows, complete with a new camera in a 360-degree bubble that will provide quality shots of both her handicapping shows as well as the horses while they are in the paddock. The paddock itself has received new mulch that has brightened up the area. Also, new fencing and sidewalks have been added to the outside of the racetrack in the paddock area.

“The different type of mulch in the paddock area this year will be less dusty and will have better wear and tear throughout the meet,” noted Cahill. “It’s refreshing to work for a company that wants to include upgrades and services for racing. We are very excited to be back racing in Indiana this year.”