Updates From Ontario Racing

Published: May 16, 2017 04:39 pm EDT

Ontario Racing has sent out its newsletter for May, which discusses a compliance update regarding the Ontario Resident Mare Program; the announcement of a review of the Horse Improvement Program; an update on the Director-at-Large application process; and that OR has participated in AGCO Officiating and Equine Drug Program Working Groups.


Ontario Racing is pleased to announce that enrollment for the Ontario Resident Mare Program is currently up over 12 per cent when compared to the final enrollment number for 2016 foals. OR’s inspection agent has been conducting random program compliance checks to ensure that the 180-day residency requirement of the program is being adhered to. To date, all mares checked have been in the province and in compliance with the rules of the program.

Mares not yet enrolled in the program for the 2017 foaling season, can still be enrolled for $50 if they have not yet foaled or for $300 if the foal has already been born. Please note that third party proof of residency must be submitted if enrolling after foaling. The list of mares currently enrolled in the Ontario Resident Mare Program for the 2017 foaling year has been posted on the Ontario Racing website.


Ontario Racing is pleased to announce that it has engaged Economic Research Ltd. and Strategic Equine Inc. to conduct a comprehensive review of the Horse Improvement Program. The purpose of the HIP Review is to provide recommendations on the strategic direction of HIP, and to measure the contribution of horse racing and breeding to Ontario’s economy. The review will rely heavily on the feedback and suggestions of industry participants through channels such as focus-group meetings, interviews, and surveys. OR looks forward to your participation.


On March 31, 2017, Ontario Racing issued a call for nominations to its Board of Directors for two Director-at-Large positions. The notice for applications was broadcast by emails to industry participants, and posted on the ontarioracing.com website. By the April 21 deadline, twenty-one applications were received, representing a broad cross-section of the industry, from horse owners, racetracks, horseplayers and equine welfare professionals. The applications are being reviewed by Ontario Racing’s Executive Committee, who will then conduct interviews with several of the most-qualified applicants. The OR Board will then announce final appointments by June 2017.


The first meetings of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario’s (AGCO) Officiating and Equine Drug Program Working Groups took place on May 9 and 10, respectively. Ontario Racing is a member of each group, and industry participants and members are encouraged to provide input and ideas on the issues being discussed. The purpose of the Officiating Working Group is to provide advice on enhancing the consistency of race officiating, the transparency of rules, and recruitment and training of race officials. The Equine Drug Program Working Group will provide advice on aspects of the equine positive test process, such as the 90-day suspension rule, and education, training, and awareness initiatives pertaining to equine drug use. Further updates will be provided as the Working Groups continue their progress.

(With files from OR)

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