September 29, 2022

Horse Racing to re-open in Ontario on June 11th

3 min read

Great news for racing in Ontario as of June 11th we are back at it in Ontario both the start of the Thoroughbred racing season at Woodbine Racetrack and the resumption of standardbred racing at Woodbine/Mohawk Park and other tracks in the region of Ontario

Based on the provincewide vaccination rate and continuing improvements in key public health and health system indicators, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, will move the province into Step One of its Roadmap to Reopen at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, June 11, 2021.

“Thanks to the ongoing success of Team Ontario’s vaccine rollout and the ongoing improvements in public health trends, we are able to enter step one of the Roadmap and begin to safely and cautiously lift restrictions,” said Premier Doug Ford. “The only reason we’re able to do so is because of the enormous sacrifices made by individuals, families and communities across Ontario. As we begin to enjoy the benefits of the first step in our roadmap like meeting friends on a patio or visiting your favourite local store, please do so safely by continuing to follow all public health guidelines.”

In order to safely enter Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen, Ontario needed to have vaccinated 60 per cent of adults with at least one dose for two weeks or longer, ensuring the first dose offers a strong level of protection against COVID-19. As of June 6, 2021 at 8:00 p.m., 72 per cent of the 18+ population in Ontario had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine with over 10 million doses now having been administered.

As a result of this accelerated timeframe, Woodbine Entertainment announced today (June 7) that Standardbred Racing at Woodbine Mohawk Park will resume this Friday, June 11 and Saturday, June 12 with 7:00 p.m. post times.

Racing will then continue its typical five race days per week schedule, with live Standardbred Racing on Monday, June 14.

“While it has been a very frustrating period, I would like to thank the Government of Ontario for the recent attention it has given the horse racing industry,” said Jim Lawson, CEO, Woodbine Entertainment. “In particular, I would like to thank Premier Doug Ford for his understanding and interest in the plight of the horse racing industry that has been so greatly impacted by the global pandemic and ensuing government restrictions.”

Live racing at Woodbine Mohawk Park will operate without any spectators due to government restrictions.

“Although our industry has been substantially impacted, I do very much remain confident in the future of horse racing in Ontario and look forward to getting back on track later this week,” Lawson added. “On behalf of Woodbine Entertainment, thank you to our horse people for their patience, professionalism, and resiliency they continue to demonstrate, especially in face of adversity.”


With the return of racing at All Ontario tracks comes the realization that this can only happen with strict protocols in place and this includes no spectators at the venus and that included horse owners who will be forced to watch races over live streaming provided either via the Horse Players Interactive platform of the individual racetracks website live feed.


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