Ontario Horse Racing Back On Track

By Ben Hamill - February 18 2021
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Ontario Horse Racing Back On Track

Ontario has finally given the green light for the resumption of live horse racing at the province’s four racetracks. Horse racing has not been permitted since provincial closures last year, and its return is certainly massively welcomed by everybody involved in the industry.

Even though spectators probably won’t be allowed to attend in-person anytime soon, it’s a decision the industry was in desperate need of, with many depending on horse racing for their livelihoods. And now that races have been given the regulatory thumbs-up, horse racing enthusiasts will once again be in a position to bet on their favourite sport.

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Race Days Resume At These Venues

Hosting one of the very first races post re-opening was Rideau Carleton Raceway, where the harness racing action resumed on Feb. 16. And now that the green light has been received from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), training schedules too, will be released soon, a spokesperson for Rideau Carleton Raceway has said.

A shift to the Red tier also means that Western Fair District has been able to resume activities. Also off to a long-awaited start on Feb. 16, race track management has confirmed that regular races will henceforth take place every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Health and safety protocols will be implemented at all Ontario race tracks, with only a skeleton staff permitted to be present on race days. Although subject to certain limitations and safety measures, the reopening of the industry is a welcome reprieve after the closures in recent months.  

Racing Returns To Woodbine

Quick to announce its own schedule for the amended season also was Woodbine Entertainment’s Woodbine Mohawk Park. Set to host its first live race of the season on Feb. 18, and with qualifiers closing a day before, the racetrack has confirmed that it will soon publish a revised schedule of events and betting options. It isn’t yet clear when spectators will be welcomed back at Woodbine Mohawk Park, but an official announcement is expected over the course of the next couple of days.

There’s quite a bit of horse racing entertainment headed punters’ way at the beloved Ontario racetrack. Woodbine Entertainment earlier this year announced massive prizes up for grabs at its upcoming Mohawk Million event and Pepsi North America Cup.

The annual return of racing to Ontario’s racetracks marks a special time of the year, and is this year made all the more so after long periods of inactivity.

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