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Canterbury racetrack will remain just that for the foreseeable future with the Australian Turf Club to build a new training surface and add to the horse facilities.

Reports it would be sold because of rezoning have been dismissed by the ATC which says there will only be fringe developments on the site.

“It will still indeed be a racetrack for the foreseeable future,” ATC chief executive Darren Pearce said.

“The rezoning allows for fringe developments and the potential for the future.

“It makes sense to take advantage of it.”

Pearce said the upcoming long-term projects at Canterbury included the installation of a synthetic Polytrack surface which would accommodate overseas horses coming to Sydney and an overflow from other training centres.

Canterbury is used as a quarantine centre and Pearce said the feedback from visiting trainers has been that another training track would be an advantage.

“The feedback from trainers such as Charlie Appleby was that they would like an alternative to turf to train their horses,” he said.

“We would also be able to accommodate more visiting trainers. With the introduction of the Highway races and trainers coming up from the country for those races, it would give them somewhere to stay.

“Our other centres at Randwick, Rosehill and Warwick Farm are full.

“Canterbury will not be a full-blown training centre but it gives us an option for interstate horses and international horses to be housed and to work.”

Appleby brought Polarisation from England to win the Sydney Cup in April for Godolphin.

The next international runners in Sydney could be in The Everest with Coolmore indicating unbeaten colt Caravaggio will come depending on his performance in Saturday’s July Cup at Newmarket in England.

American trainer Wesley Ward is also touting the possibility Bound For Nowhere, fourth behind Caravaggio in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot, could come if he can secure a slot and depending on his performance in his next race in France.

Pearce said the ATC was still scrutinising the applicants for the club’s slot in the $10 million race on October 14 and was aiming to have the new training track at Canterbury laid in time.

 
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