Association News

ASTM Equestrian Subcommittee seeks input on track standards.

Press Release Summary:

Oct 06, 2010 - Subcommittee F08.28 on Equestrian Services asks for input from equestrian trackmen and horsemen interested in improving performance, uniformity, and safety of equestrian surfaces. Specifically, call applies to 3 proposed standards that address use of impact analyzer to evaluate turfgrass tracks (ASTM WK29881), standardizes laboratory evaluation of dirt track soil material (ASTM WK29879), and terminology for communicating track surfaces/components on consistent basis (ASTM WK27877).

ASTM International - West Conshohocken, PA

Original Press Release

ASTM Equestrian Subcommittee Developing Proposed Track Standards

Press release date: Sep 30, 2010

W. CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa.-Subcommittee F08.28 on Equestrian Services was formed in November 2009 and is part of ASTM International Committee F08 on Sports Equipment and Facilities. F08.28 is seeking input from equestrian trackmen and horsemen who are interested in improving the performance, uniformity and safety of equestrian surfaces, beginning with the development of the following three proposed standards.

Once approved, the following proposed standards will be useful to horse racetrack superintendents, facility managers, soil testing laboratories, consultants and others involved in equestrian work.

ASTM WK29881, Use of an Impact Analyzer to Evaluate Turfgrass Tracks Used for Horse Racing According to Michael DePew, consulting agronomist/soil scientist, Environmental Technical Services LLC, and an F08 member, there is a need for tools for turf track evaluations that have a consistent methodology for application throughout the equestrian industry.

"ASTM WK29881 will be an evaluation tool that is intended to provide a track superintendent some of the information necessary to evaluate a track," says DePew. Information gleaned from the test method will be used to either alleviate compaction (reduce hardness) or to gain more uniformity in impact characteristics across the racing surface.

ASTM WK29879, Guide for the Laboratory Evaluation of Dirt Track Soil Material Used for Horse Racing The purpose of ASTM WK29879 is to standardize the types of tests performed when a racing facility submits a soil sample for evaluation. The proposed standard will also cover the format of reports that result from soil tests.

"A variety of soil laboratories (agronomic and engineering labs) are used to evaluate soil samples for dirt tracks," says DePew. "Having consistent track soil evaluations will help to build consistency in the industry and allow facilities to make comparisons between each other's track materials and related performance ratings."

ASTM WK27877, Terminology Relating to Thoroughbred Horse Racing Surfaces The proposed new terminology standard will "allow track persons to communicate track surfaces/components on a consistent basis and on an 'apples to apples' basis," says DePew, who also notes that ASTM WK27877 will help to reduce the use of varying terms in the equestrian industry.

ASTM International is one of the largest international standards development and delivery systems in the world. ASTM International meets the World Trade Organization (WTO) principles for the development of international standards: coherence, consensus, development dimension, effectiveness, impartiality, openness, relevance and transparency. ASTM standards are accepted and used in research and development, product testing, quality systems and commercial transactions.

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ASTM Committee F08 Next Meeting: Nov 17-19, November Committee Week, San Antonio, Texas Technical Contact: Michael DePew, Environmental Technical Services LLC, Tekonsha, Mich., Phone: 517-767-4507; ASTM Staff Contact: Christine Basile, Phone: 610-832-9728; ASTM PR Contact: Barbara Schindler, Phone: 610-832-9603;