Horse racing in Ontario might be facing more challenges over the upcoming months of daily operation and live meets. Recently an anonymous source revealed that this year’s edition of the Queen’s Plate will be delayed in the summer. August 22 could see the official start of this long-anticipated premium horse race at Woodbine Racetrack.
The unprecedented situation is taking its toll on Woodbine Entertainment and on the horse people of Ontario, currently unable to participate in horse races and benefit from them. Horse racing in Ontario is among the businesses considered non-essential and therefore restricted by the provincial government. It strives to protect the people during these trying times and promote physical distancing whenever that is possible.
Rumour Has It
The year 2021 might be the second one experiencing delays and event postponing, as businesses strive to remain as flexible as possible. In a recent statement, an anonymous source revealed that one of the premium events part of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown could be postponed to late August, in order to protect the horse people of Ontario, along with horse racing fans.
The Queen’s Plate usually takes place over the last days of June, but this year could see its postponing to August 22, amounting to a four-week delay. The source has information that Woodbine Entertainment has not officially issued as of now. This could happen later this year, as the summer months approach and a thorough evaluation of the situation has been made. It could be recalled that last year, the Queen’s Plate was supposed to take place on June 27.
However, the unprecedented situation managed to change all plans and it was rescheduled to September 12, following the late start of horse racing at both Woodbine Racetrack and Woodbine Mohawk Park. All three legs of the OLG Canadian Triple Crown took place in the fall without spectators at the racetracks.
Ontario Horse Racing Projections
This year is about to bring the 162nd edition of the CA$1-million Queen’s Plate and all eyes are set on the post-position draw. It is the first leg and also known as North America’s longest continuously-run stakes horse racing tournament. Queen’s Plate comes with stakes of CA$1 million as a great opportunity for experience racehorses to make it to the first position on the official leaderboard.
Usually it takes place on a Sunday and this year could see it transforming the last Sunday of August. Projections for this year are that many individuals will get the chance to watch the live race in-person at Woodbine Racetrack. In the meantime, the two racetracks remain closed. Jim Lawson, Chief Executive Officer of Woodbine Entertainment, recently expressed his confusion as to why the Ontario provincial government has given its support to NHL games to commence.
He pointed out that these trying times call for rigorous safety and health protocols implemented by all sports, not only horse racing. Recently, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators received a nod to participate in home games with all safety and health measures implemented.