Hastings Racecourse has been a topic of discussion for quite some time now, even before the unprecedented situation we are in right now transformed our lives. One owner-trainer came to the conclusion that it is time for action. Glen Todd extended a private loan to the racecourse, eyeing the saving of its operation over the 2021 racing season and more.
Horse people rely on the regular operation of the horse racetrack and the months of closure and limited training have surely taken their toll on them and their livelihoods. In order to save hundreds of job positions within Hastings Racecourse, Mr. Todd offered an interest-free loan reaching millions of Canadian dollars. It will refuel purses and make this racing season possible.
Owner-Trainer Glen Todd
The owner-trainer who had extended his hand in this time of need is associated with North American Thoroughbred Horse Co. With his help, the Vancouver-based racetrack is about to have its purses once again thriving over the upcoming weeks of the live schedule. Mr. Todd made it clear that he did not do this seeking recognition or appraisal, but instead wanting to support his industry.
The alternative this field was facing was massive layoffs and hundreds of people having nowhere to go with their racehorses mid-season. Following some careful examination and calculation, the owner and trainer of thoroughbred horses concluded that a million Canadian dollars would be enough for the month of August. This will make it possible for the local horse people to continue their daily races and complete the racing season.
It should be noted that the British Columbia Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders Association and the Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association power the purse account. The private loan is extended to the horse people and their racing purses only. The casino operator overseeing Hastings Incorporated will not benefit from the financial support offered recently. Great Canadian Gaming Corporation takes care of the gaming activities on the premises.
David Milburn, president of the Horsemens’ Benevolent Protective Association, expressed his gratitude to Mr. Todd in this time of need. Such a breach financing will have to be returned once horse racing returns to normal and in-person gambling brings back to life the local gaming field. The gaming revenue projected along with the bets placed on live horse racing will be later on used for the loan paying back.
It could be recalled that the year 2019 was a turbulent one for the racetrack too, as the month of August saw an unexpected raid conducted by the Canada Border Services Agency and the provincial Gambling Policy and Enforcement Branch. As a result of it, some 26 foreign workers were taken away. All of them were employed by the horse owners and they had no direct link to Great Canadian Gaming, or the racetrack management, as it was later clarified.
An Inland Enforcement Officer with the Canada Border Services Agency confirmed that a Gambling Policy and Enforcement Branch inspector was located at Hastings Racecourse and he managed to conduct fraudulent activity. What actually facilitated the fraud was the language of the licenses. In them, the Mexican workers were listed as horse owners, since this enables the fraud.
Source: Ryan, Denise. “Private loan extends the racing season at Hastings Racecourse“, VancouverSun.com, July 26, 2021