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Report: Rideau Vows To Keep Racing

Published: June 12, 2012 4:57 pm ET

Last Comment: June 13, 2012 3:03 pm ET | 9 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

According to a report by CTV, Rideau Carleton Raceway does not have plans to close its doors once the slots-at-racetracks program ends March 31, 2013.

The CTV article has cited the track's owners as saying that the raceway will keep races going, despite the fact that slot machine gaming and the current revenue stream will be greatly reduced even in a best-case scenario.

The worst case scenario is that the slot machines are taken out and the revenue stream dries up completely.

It was confirmed late last week that the owners of Fraserville, Ont.'s Kawartha Downs are planning on ceasing live racing at the Peterborough area track if a new financial deal is not in place before March 31, 2013.

June 13, 2012 - 3:03 pmKD has said racing will cease

Carolyn Rae SAID...

KD has said racing will cease in March 2013 if there is no new financial deal in place by March 2013.

If the racing does end at the end of March 2013, can someone tell me where the money in the horseman's purse acct goes? There will obviously still be money in the purse account, since the cap on purses was instituted last year. I am hearing this question has been asked at several meetings, yet no-one has an answer.

Sincerely hope someone is on top of this, or is the fox watching over the hen house again!

June 13, 2012 - 12:25 pmNow Rideau you are willing to

Ken Walker SAID...

Now Rideau you are willing to accept a commercial lease??????? The horsemen have to get government support?????? If the horsemen do not get funding from the government you are going to lease your premises to OLG so that the slots will continue???????? How much money are you willing to lose on this proposition?????? They will not pay you what you receive from the slots at racetracts. You are in fact hurting the horse racing industry and the horsemen need to wake up. Your facility after five years will be turned into a glorified soccer field, football field, numerous hockey rinks like it happened in Regina.Ken

June 13, 2012 - 11:31 amI think most Rideau

I think most Rideau participants are reassured to know that Rideau Carleton stands behind them. If the industry has any chance of standing on its own legs past March 2013, then a facility to race at will obviously be required. I am sure this in no way means that the racetrack or the participants accept the Liberal's decision to end the slots at racetrack program and are giving up the fight to preserve their industry.

Any decision by the horsemen to accept or reject a purse cut at this point in time is ours to make. I don't believe there is a right or wrong decision. We all face different situations and must make decisions based on those requirements and personal feelings about the crisis facing the industry. Since this is a continually changing situation given the government's ongoing announcements and our industry's response, I am sure the NCRHHA will continue to provide the horse people with the opportunity to consider changes as necessary.

As for shutting the OLG out effective immediately, I can't imagine that being beneficial here at Rideau. The city of Ottawa does not have a reputation for moving quickly when it comes to making big decisions on something on the scale of building a new casino. They have fought for years about Landsdowne Park, various bridges and LRT. The OLG will find themselves out of luck setting up a new "privatized" casino location in this city in an expedient manner. If they wish to maintain a revenue stream from this city, I believe they will be negotiating with Rideau Carleton in a more friendly manner or doing without.

June 13, 2012 - 9:31 amPierre If they bet $150,000

Pierre If they bet $150,000 on the live races less than 10 percent or $15,000 is retained for purses. If the track retained the whole bet amount there would be no payouts. As for kicking out the OLG I have heard the horseman group cant convince horsemen to reduce purses to extend the funding past march 2013 so a protest that would reduce purses by 80 percent might be a bit tough for horsemen to get behind.

June 13, 2012 - 1:10 amIf we all do something EVERY

Karen Duck SAID...

If we all do something EVERY day for Racing, we can win this.

June 13, 2012 - 12:04 amIt's time to lock the doors

It's time to lock the doors for anyone wanting to play the slots. There are separate entrances for the restaurant and the off-track betting so this wouldn't be a problem. Also the only night Rideau gives out more in purses than takes in is Fridays so even if there are only 2 days a week at 15 or even 16 races and a few extra days during the year like the twilight Mondays they do in the summer I think the track will be fine. Cut off the OLG now.

June 12, 2012 - 11:37 pmBad timing because all the

Bad timing because all the public hears is that Rideau will still race and what you havent said is that the average purse will be 1400 . The liberal govt will now use you for the poster child regarding ther stupid claim that there will be 6 tracks still racing. I know that the Liberals have used Rideau as the poster child for why they eliminated the program . The exact quote was why would the people of Ontario support a program where 70 percent of the money goes to people who dont live in the province. Why dont you add up your total purse account that is created by areas other than slots and do a follow up article that talks about how much money the horsemen will compete for.

June 12, 2012 - 8:02 pmThanks Rideau ownership for

Thanks Rideau ownership for the effort,

Pls do one more thing, kick the OLG out now.
Lets face the new reality head on. Forward we go with the grieving process; time for us all to get out of the "denial" stage. SC's coverage is great, yet always sprinkled with a couple dashes of optimism. We all know the reality - look at your win pictures from the early 90's and prior, note the purse amount - that is where we start again, building our product - let's get going on this or dig in and do something else.


fewer days
fewer full time horsemen
a part time job
more promotions/marketing (costs $)
lobby for new forms of wagering

June 13, 2012 - 9:03 amThank you Rideau Carleton for

Thank you Rideau Carleton for this decision. I should add that I regularly play this track at off-track betting & HPI. I hope we can all "vote with our money" by wagering on live Ontario racing & avoiding the slots 100% unless the partnership is re-established in some meaningful way that benefits the tracks & horsemen/women. How many of us have slots-playing family members, colleagues or friends who don't know the extent of the harm being done by the Ontario government decision?

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