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An all-weather track is a horse racing course that can be used regardless of the weather conditions.
There are multiple types of all-weather track used across the globe but three types of surface are used in the UK. They are fibresand, polytrack and tapeta.
Fibresand is a heavier surface and likened to going of heavy turf running as there is an element of turf kickback.
Polytrack is like sand and is likened to running conditions of good/good to firm on a standard turf track. Tapeta is another form of polytrack and can range from good to soft depending on how the clerk of the course sets the track up.
Unlike turf or dirt tracks, synthetic or artificial all-weather tracks allow for racing to go ahead in poor weather as they have better-engineered drainage.
When it comes to betting on a race meeting on an all-weather track, it is important to note that form does not transfer to the surfaces mentioned above.
This is vital when it comes to betting as taking into consideration factors such as how well a chosen horse has performed in the past at that specific track, or whether a jockey appears to have a preference for racing on an all-weather track, could be significant.
Another important aspect to consider when placing a bet is that if it rains, an all-weather track tends to have the opposite effect of a turf track as the surface becomes more compact. This is contrary to a turf track, where the rain softens the ground making the weather another defining factor when considering which horse-jockey combination to make a bet on.
There are six race venues in the UK that are classed all-weather tracks.
These are Southwell (which uses fibresand), Kempton Chelmsford, Lingfield (all polytracks) and Wolverhampton and Newcastle (which use Tapeta as their surface).