London based Total Performance Data (TPD) has announced that Equibase has installed its global positioning satellite (GPS) system at four racetracks across North America.
Equibase is the technology partnership between The Jockey Club and Thoroughbred Racing Associations of North America.
The technology is the first to use GPS to track timings of racehorses as opposed to the traditional method of sectional timing, done with the recording of running between two points and by laser beams and stop watches.
GPS technology alternatively uses GPS and local positioning system to constantly track the horse throughout the race and all its movements.
The comprehensive data captured can then be used to display on-screen graphics and charts. Data captured includes strides per second, peak average feet per stride and total distance run.
Currently the TPD has more than a dozen tracking systems deployed to data, with collected data on more that 60,000 horses.
As part of the agreement TPD will also become the official timer for the four tracks, Woodbine in Toronto, Golden Gate Fields in San Francisco Bay area and Laurel Park and Pimlico courses in Maryland.
Speaking on the announcement Jason Wilson, president and chief operating officer of Equibase said: “Since the earliest days of the company, Equibase has sought a viable system of collecting data through automated tracking.
“We are excited to be making substantial progress in this area and pleased to have partnered with both Woodbine and The Stronach Group.”
Jonathan Zammit, vice-president of the Thoroughbred Racing operations for Woodbine said: “We have been using GPS timing since the beginning of July and have been pleased with not only its performance but the flexibility it offers. We are also keen to explore future capabilities of the system.”