Ontario Racing announced today (Feb. 19) that it is aligned with Woodbine Entertainment in its support for the legalization of single sports wagering, and confidence that Canada’s horse racing industry, and the over 50,000 jobs its supports, will be protected.
“Ontario Racing, the voice of the horse racing industry in the province, stands with Woodbine Entertainment in supporting the legalization of single event sports wagering, and is optimistic that horse racing, a major contributor to the economy on a local, provincial and national level, will be protected,” said John Hayes, Ontario Racing Independent Chair.
In November, Woodbine Entertainment announced its support for Bill C-13, a proposed bill introduced by the Federal Government to legalize single event sports wagering that considered the potential for unintended consequences to the horse racing industry by including language to protect it.
Subsequently, Private Members Bill C-218, an act to amend the Criminal Code of Conduct regarding sports betting, was voted on and passed overwhelmingly at second reading in the House of Commons on February 17.
Ontario Racing, along with Woodbine Entertainment, is confident that Private Members Bill C-218 will also adopt language through the legislative process to protect the long-term sustainability of the horse racing industry.
Woodbine Entertainment, Canada’s largest racetrack operator, and an industry leader in single event wagering practices and technology, has legally operated single event wagering through a pari-mutuel model in a highly government-regulated industry for years.
“We remain committed to working in concert with Woodbine Entertainment and the Government to protect the interests of the thousands of people and families that comprise the horse racing industry, and to make certain that Canadian horse racing is afforded the chance to be an active and valued participant in single event sports wagering,” said Hayes.