How technology has changed horse racing in 140 years

This year the derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky celebrates its 140th anniversary. Recently, this undoubtedly bright, exciting spectacle has become an example of how the glorious traditions of the past are complemented by new technologies.

Gradually, the usual unpaved race tracks are replaced by synthetic ones. According to experts, synthetic turf reduced fatal horse injuries by 37%. However, other researchers believe there is an increased risk of micro-injury on artificial turf.

Modern technology has even penetrated into such a conservative area as making horseshoes. As it turns out, layered 3D printing technology is great for printing horseshoes. This makes it possible to use special materials.

3D printed horseshoes

In November 2013, Australian scientists from the Center for Scientific and Applied Research (CRISPO) made, or rather printed titanium horseshoes specifically for derby on a 3D printer. Due to the strength of titanium, much less metal is used for each horseshoe, which makes it 2 times lighter than conventional horseshoes. In addition, it takes no more than an hour to make it.

Equilume Horse Mask

Another equestrian know-how is the special horse mask from Equilume. The fact is that racehorses born at the beginning of the year have the best physical characteristics. The Equilme mask provides the optimal level of blue light in one eye, so that the horse thinks it is summer and his body begins to prepare for the reproduction of offspring.