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Horse Racing Industry Seeks Single-Game Betting Protection

The introduction of single-game wagering in Canada seems more and more likely, but the majorly supported change has been the cause of some concerns among the horse racing leaders in the country. Many of the sector’s leaders are worried that the proposed legalization of single-game betting might unintentionally harm the wellbeing of the live harness sport.

Back in February, Bill C-218 has been passed at the House of Commons after its second hearing, meaning that Canada is one step closer to finally introduce such a betting opportunity. If the bill is passed by the next legal organs then it would amend the country’s Criminal Code thus allowing gambling fans to place bets on single events.

Unintentional Harm

The horse racing industry represented on March 9, 2021, by Woodbine Entertainment, Racetracks of Canada, Quebec Jockey Club and the Horsemen’s Benevolent Protective Association of Ontario expressed its gratitude to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights for the opportunity that such legalization will provide for the sector and the whole gambling industry.

CEO of Woodbine Entertainment Jim Lawson thanked for the opportunity of representing the industry and said that he is hopeful that the government is aware of the significance of the horse racing sector and its economic impact on the country. That is why Mr. Lawson believes that the industry must be protected from any unintended damage from the legalization of single-game betting.

During the committee meeting, Mr. Lawson along with Racetracks of Canada President Bill Ford, Quebec Jockey Club Director Murielle Thomassin, HBPA President Sue Leslie uttered their support for the proposed bill but urged authorities to implement the needed measures that will ensure the safety of the live harness sport. The field’s leaders are hopeful that the fixed odds betting on horse races will be banned in order to protect the industry 50,000 jobs it provides to the people of Canada.

Due to the unprecedented situation, the industry’s share of wagering is reduced and the sector is currently suffering from the consequences of the lockdown restrictions. Mr. Ford requested the Government to reassess their stance on the legalization of Historical Horse Racing. This is a wagering offering that allows fans to place bets on the outcome of past events, but players cannot check online for the winner of the event, due to the way the information is presented to them.

Industry Status

A recent public announcement from Woodbine Entertainment saw CEO Mr. Lawson addressed the current situation of the horse racing sector and its current protocols for operations amidst the unprecedented situation. He also used this as an opportunity to thank everyone who was involved in the successful discussions and return of the live harness races in Ontario and people who continue to support the industry even in such difficult times.

Mohawk Million II

Earlier in March, Woodbine Entertainment officially announced all slot owners for the highly-awaited Mohawk Million event, which will take place on September 25, 2021. It became known that Determination, EquineX, and Gino Toscani have each purchased two slots for the event, and Brad Grant, Crawford Farms, and Steve Heimbecker are each in possession of one slot. The final 10th slot will be decided by the winner of William Wellwood Memorial which will take place on September 11, 2021.

Source: “Woodbine Entertainment, Racetracks of Canada, Quebec Jockey Club & HBPA Address Committee Regarding Sports Betting” Woodbine Entertainment, March 9, 2021