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Horse Racing/actual distance ran by horses in different paths

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Question
QUESTION: Ed, On a one mile oval - how much farther does a horse run in the two path or three path and so on compared to a horse running "on the rail" AND - in which 'path' is the distance of the race measured - I mean is it measured right on the rail OR a certain distnace FROM the rail AND is that consistent from track to track? Thank you!
Blair

ANSWER: hi Blair -- if i can remember, the timer starts when the horses leave the starting gate. now each pole is timed and it flashes on the in field tote board. so i don't think it matters which horse or which path they are running in when that horse hits the Pole the timer checks the time. so a horse could run on the outside of the track and be in front from the gate and the timer would click at each pole. and it is consistent at all tracks because they all have the same basic timing devises in use.  hope that helps you.  thanks ED HESS

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Ed, Thanks - I wasn't aware that that is how they timed the races - interesting BUT... what I was trying to ask but didn't do it properly is this: If three horses ran around the track side by side and hit the wire exactly at the same time - the horse on the outside ran the farthest and therefore was the fastest horse even though they "clocked" the same time. My question is how much farther did the horse in the three path run compared to the horse in the one path?

Blair

Answer
HI   I WOULD THINK NO MATER WHERE THE HORSE WAS PLACED IN THE RACE, NO MATTER IF THE HORSE WAS ON THE OUTSIDE OR ON THE INSIDE, THE TIMER SHOWS HOW FAST THE RACE WAS RUN IN. NOW IF THE HORSE WAS WAY BEHIND AND CLOSED VERY FAST  TO GET UP IN A PHOTO THEN THE CLOSING HORSE WOULD RUN A FASTER FINISH FRACTION THEN THE HORSE THAT WAS IN THE LEAD . THE FINISH TIME IS THE SAME NO MATTER WHERE THE HORSE WAS RACED FROM, OUTSIDE OR INSIDE. YOU WOULD THINK THAT IF THE HORSE WAS ON THE OUTSIDE ALL OF THE RACE THEN HE WOULD RUN FURTHER AND FASTER, BUT THE FINISH TIME IS THE FINISH TIME.SO I DO BELIVE THAT THE HORSE THAT WINS ACTUALLY RUNS THE FASTER TIME IN THE RACE.  THANKS ED HESS  

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Ed Hess

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Have trained thoroughbreds for 30 odd years. Have been a licensed trainer for that long of time. I continue to train my race horses and thoroughly enjoy every day.

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Experience: Licensed trainer for over 30 yrs. Have had lots of winners in all different types of races - from bottom claimers to top quality stakes winners. My best money winner was Aristocratic Cross (multiple stakes winner). My best claiming horse was Navajo Family, winner of 12 races in one year. I still enjoy racing a modest stable of horses each year.

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