Woodbine Entertainment is ready to restart the live harness season after the current uplift of some lockdown restrictions. The horse racing leader has been given the green light to renew operations at its Woodbine Mohawk Park in Ontario. It was announced on February 25, 2021, that the property finally has official dates for the next horse racing events.
The restart of racing is possible after the Registrar of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario has approved the racing track’s application to reschedule some of the dates for the events. The requested change of schedule was also assessed by Ontario Racing and the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Association who also suggested that changes will be needed.
The schedule has been changed to the following. For now, there will be four events in the month of March, the first one being set for Thursday, March 25. The next one set for the following day of March 26, then one on Saturday, March 27, and the last being on Monday, March, 29. All of the events will have a starting hour of 7:00 p.m.
It was an eventful day for the venue on February 25, 2021, with 11 qualifying events taking place on the race track. Millenium Seelster headed the first round of qualifiers with a 1:55.3. The fastest pacing mile for the day was achieved by Outlawgrabbingears who managed to get a 1:54 time in the freezing cold weather. Five-year-old Smart Shark gelding set a clip of :28.3 and 1:24 before leading the second one with 13-and-three-quarter length.
The fastest trotting mile of the session was set by Final Claim with a 1:57.1 lap. The five-year-old Muscle Hill gelding beat pocket-sitter Arrakis by three-and-three-quarter lengths for the first place. With Sortie finishing five lengths but falling behind in third place. Rockinwithcustard recorded a pace of :30,4, :59.1, and 1:29.2 in the qualifier but lost time in the stretch coming to a 2:00.3 finish. Her stablemate Major Custard got a 1:55.4 mile and finished third in his qualifier after Better Take It.
Saratoga Ready For Horse Racing
Saratoga Race Track also revealed its opening events for its 80th season of live harness racing. The start is scheduled for March 1, 2021, with races on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. Spectators will not be allowed to witness the live races but horse owners can attend whenever one of their horses is participating but they must book a reservation as well. The venue will be introducing two new wagers besides the well-known Pick-5, with the Jackpot Super High Five and the Pick Six Jackpot.
Winter Series Reschedule
Woodbine Entertainment additionally informed the public about the rescheduling of several winter events which will be taking place on its race track in Ontario. The Family Day Trotting Series and Wine & Roses Trotting Series will be shifted to March 8, 2021. Blizzard Pacing events will take place will now be on March 11, 2021, and the Snowshoe Pacing on March 12. Valedictory Pacing Series and Niagara Pacing Series finals will be held shortly after the beforementioned events.
The horse racing leader joined in on the subject of single-betting legalization in Canada with Ontario Racing in order to show their support for proposed changes. The amendment seems more imminent with each passing day and it has acquired major backing across the country. The live harness leaders voiced their support of the introduction of single-events betting but are hopeful that authorities will work towards protecting the horse racing sector from the seemingly-inevitable change.
Source: “Race Dates Added At Mohawk” Standardbred Canada, February 25, 2021