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Breeders’ Cup: wet weather continues to blight buildup to meeting

Both the dirt and turf tracks are showing clear signs of their overnight drenching as the countdown continues

The good news from Churchill Downs on Thursday morning is that the rain which started around lunchtime on Wednesday has stopped. The bad news is that according to every available forecast, it has only stopped for now. Drizzle, at least, is likely to set in from dawn – which is in about an hour or so – until early evening, which makes the track’s decision to allow horses to train on the turf course now seem puzzling, to say the least.

In all, there have been around two inches of rain so far, and while it is still a captivating sight to watch dozens of horses exercising under the floodlights, both the dirt and turf tracks are showing clear signs of their overnight drenching. The races scheduled for the turf course later on Thursday afternoon will almost certainly switch to the dirt, as was the case on Wednesday, and while the racing line will be dolled off, it is surprising – indeed, unprecedented here according to one veteran of the meeting – that horses will be allowed on to it at all after so much rain.

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