The Northumberland Plate could still be run on the turf at NewcastlePICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)
Arc proposes all-weather switch at Newcastle
ARENA RACING COMPANY has launched a consultation program to consider the development of an all-weather course at Newcastle.
The proposals are based around replacing the existing turf Flat track with an all-weather surface that would incorporate the only floodlit straight mile in the world.
The existing turf jumps track would be unaffected and there would be scope to have more jumps fixtures at the course than are possible at present. The development would also leave the track with an option to host its most famous race, the John Smiths Northumberland Plate, on a turf surface.
The course's owners hope that a planning application for the scheme can be lodged by January 31 and if successful racing on the new surface would commence in 2015.
Arc managing director Tony Kelly said: "The development of an all-weather track in the north has long been an ambition of ours and this proposal would develop the best floodlit all-weather track in the world given the superb wide, galloping track and our ability to incorporate a floodlit straight mile."