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MacMillan On Rideau Closure


Published: February 8, 2011 2:11 pm ET

Last Comment: February 8, 2011 6:37 pm ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

"We are disappointed that we weren't involved earlier on in the process...Obviously we're looking to move forward from here and get back to racing and, most importantly, make it up to the fans in some way."

Trot Radio Norm Borg speaks candidly with John MacMillan, who acts as a director for the National Capital Region Harness Horse Association and and also trains a stable of horses. MacMillan reveals that the NCRHHA found out 24 hours before the shut down at Rideau.

"I know we as an organization were not contacted by [Ontario Racing Commission] prior to the shutdown, it was Jean Larose of Rideau Carleton who let us know there wouldn't be any racing for at least a few days."

Formerly the track announcer at Rideau and someone who is quite familiar with the gondola that prompted the shutdown, MacMillan stated that he would be "completely comfortable" working in that environment. Three weeks prior to the shutdown, a structural review of the gondola was performed by an independent contractor.

"Those findings from what I read, [the report] said that it was structurally sound and there there were a few cosmetic items that needed to be upgraded over time."

MacMillan expressed concern of the costs for the horsemen not only in Ottawa, but for the other harness racing tracks that experienced an influx when Rideau shut down.

While stopping short of pointing the finger in anyone's direction when asked about culpability in this matter, when asked if the ORC could have handled the shutdown better MacMillan would only go so far as to say that he's hopeful for better communication in the future.

The full interview with MacMillan is available below. Please note that the opinions expressed in the following interview are those of the participant and do not necessarily reflect Rideau Carleton Raceway and/or Standardbred Canada.

Episode 182 – NCRHHA Director John MacMillan
Audio Format: MP3 audio
Host: Norm Borg

February 8, 2011 - 6:37 pmI can't understand why the

I can't understand why the ORC gets all the blame re Rideau closing. The ORC is responsible for each track and what happens at each track re results, safety issues, etc. It is the ORC who is responsible for every facet at each track. If they did not take action, they could land in hot water re blame at any track of things not working right.

We should be backing up the ORC, not blaming them for tracks that need repair to be safe for horses, drivers, and fans in attendance.

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