Following the current uplift of some lockdown restrictions, Woodbine Entertainment is ready to restart the live harness season. In order to renew operations at its Woodbine Mohawk Park in Ontario, the horse racing leader was given the green light. On February 25, 2021, it was announced that the property will finally have official dates for the next horse racing events.
It is possible to restart racing after the Registrar of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario has approved the application by the racing track to reschedule some of the dates for the events.
Ontario Racing and the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Association, which have suggested that changes would be needed, also evaluated the requested schedule change.
The schedule has been updated as follows. For now, in the month of March, there will be four events, with the first one scheduled for Thursday, March 25. The next one is scheduled for March 26, the next day, then Saturday, March 27, and Monday, March 29, the last day. All of the events will have a starting hour of 7:00 p.m.
With 11 qualifying events taking place on the race track, it was an eventful day for the venue on February 25, 2021. The first round of qualifiers was headed by Millenium Seelster with 1:55.3. Outlawgrabbingears, who managed to get a 1:54 time in the freezing cold weather, achieved the fastest pacing mile for the day. Before leading the second one with a length of 13 and three-quarters, the five-year-old Smart Shark gelding set a clip of 28.3 and 1:24.
Final Claim had set the fastest trotting mile of the session with a 1:57.1 lap. In the first place, the five-year-old Muscle Hill gelding beat pocket-sitter Arrakis by three-and-three-quarter lengths. With Sortie finishing five lengths in third place but falling behind. In the qualifier, Rockinwithcustard recorded a pace of 30,4,:59.1, and 1:29.2, but lost time in the stretch to a 2:00.3 finish. After Better Take It, her stablemate Major Custard had a 1:55.4 mile and finished third in his qualifier.
For its 80th season of live harness racing, Saratoga Race Track also revealed its opening events. The launch is scheduled for March 1, 2021, on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, with races. Spectators may not be able to observe the live races, whenever if one of their horses participates, horse owners can attend, but they must also book a reservation. 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.
Furthermore, Woodbine Entertainment informed the public about the rescheduling of many winter events to take place on its Ontario race track. The Family Day Trotting Series and Wine & Roses Trotting Series will be moved to March 8, 2021. The events at Blizzard Pacing will now take place on March 11, 2021, and at Snowshoe Pacing on March 12. Shortly after the events listed above, the Valedictory Pacing Series and Niagara Pacing Series finals will be held.
The horse racing leader joined Ontario Racing in Canada on the subject of single-betting legalization in order to demonstrate their support for the proposed changes. With each passing day, the amendment seems more imminent and has acquired significant backing across the country. The live harness leaders voiced their support for the introduction of betting single-events, but are optimistic that authorities will work to protect the horse racing sector from the seemingly inevitable change.