Racing enthusiasts already know that there are different types of racetracks for horses. But, if you’re new to the industry or just curious, you may wonder about these surfaces and what they mean for the horses’ performance. What are the different types of tracks, and what difference can that make each time a horse is entered in a race?

Dirt Tracks

Dirt tracks are the most common in the U.S., while our U.K. racing counterparts prefer turf. All three jewels of the Triple Crown are run on dirt tracks:

  • Churchill Downs in Kentucky
  • Pimlico in Maryland
  • Belmont Park in New York

Dirt tracks are the most impacted by weather, and the conditions of the track can change from race to race. Caretakers seal the track if it rains by compressing the top layer to encourage rain to run off the surface. A dry track is also called “Fast.” Depending on the conditions, they can also be described as good, sloppy, or muddy.

Turf Tracks

Turf or grass tracks are most popular in Europe, but they have also become a staple at U.S. racetracks. Many have been installed inside dirt tracks to offer a variety of races on any given day. Unlike dirt tracks, where early speed is the advantage, turf tracks favor horses who can sprint the last portion of the race.

Turf tracks are also dependent on weather conditions. Dry turf, like dry dirt, is the fastest track, but as rain soaks into the ground, a wet track can be downgraded to yielding or soft, affecting the horses’ performance.

Synthetic Tracks

If you watch other sports, like American Football or Soccer, you’re probably aware of synthetic fields. This trend has reached the sport of horseracing as well. In horseracing, we go as far as having different types of synthetic tracks, as well. This allows for maintenance under different weather conditions. Synthetic racetracks are a composite of sand, fiber, wax, and rubber. They are considered safer than dirt or turf tracks and are all-weather surfaces that don’t carry the same weather-related conditions as natural tracks.

Only a handful of tracks in North America are currently using synthetic surfaces.

Horse Preferences

Like any athlete, horses have preferences that extend to all aspects of racing. They have preferred distances, positions, and surfaces. Part of the job of our Ologists is to determine how each horse excels. This allows us to place horses, not only with the right trainer, but possibly at the right racetrack or region for them. For types of tracks, it isn’t just the surface itself but also the condition that will make a difference.

Training for Racetracks

horseOlogy is located at the Nelson Jones Training Center in Ocala, Florida. Our center has access to dirt and turf tracks during the breaking and training process. We take a hands-on and individualized approach with each horse to learn what they like, communicate what we expect, and ensure those strengths match for peak performance.

Follow horseOlogy online and on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to learn more about our team, thoroughbreds, and services. Call us at 855-HORSIES (855-467-7437) to set up your visit to our facility.

All Available Shares

horseOlogy has only limited investment opportunities in this year’s investment group.

Horses of Racing Age Be A Lady ’21 by Violence

Horses of Racing Age

We love to watch our graduates grow and be successful on the racetrack.

Horses of Racing Age Be A Lady ’21 by Violence

Yearling to Two Year Olds

We can’t wait for you to come along and experience all that these horses have to offer.

Weanlings Available

Weanlings to Yearlings

Get involved early as there are limited ownership opportunities.

Weanlings Available


Allowing our partners to take part in the breeding process from start to finish.

Developing and Training

Our approach is joining up with each horse so that they understand the process of learning through acceptance and not fear.

Horses of Racing Age Be A Lady ’21 by Violence

Rehab and Layup

Whether it is to let them rest mentally and/or physically or an injury, wehas the means and skill set.

Horses of Racing Age Be A Lady ’21 by Violence

Sales Prep

At horseOlogy, we focus on the tiniest details that can set our horses apart in the sales ring.

Weanlings Available


horseOlogy provides a boutique experience while limiting the number of mares and foals.

Horses of Racing Age Be A Lady ’21 by Violence


We bring years of experience evaluating conformation and pedigree to uncover the best pinhooking prospects.

Small Share Investing

A business model whereby a group of people can participate in the owning horse, which may otherwise not have been feasible.


Bloodstock Advisors

A bloodstock advisor’s services may include but are not limited to, mating, sale placement, acquisition, trainer placement, and overall management of your horse.

Available Shares




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