HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) — Oaklawn thoroughbred race track in Hot Springs is instituting a new program to require that horses be tested for equine herpes virus.
The Oaklawn barn opens Nov. 12 in advance of the live racing season that starts in January.
The highly contagious virus emerged among horses recently at Hawthorn Racecourse in Chicago and many horsemen from that track winter at Oaklawn.
The policy requires all thoroughbreds and ponies entering the Oaklawn stable to have a current health certificate that shows the animal has been vaccinated for the disease not more than 60 days before and no fewer than 14 days prior to arrival.
The track is working with the Arkansas Racing Commission on the issue.
The 2013 meet begins on Jan. 11.