After a successful 2010 season, it has been announced that live horse racing will be returning to Hippodrome de Quebec this season
The Quebec Jockey Club has announced that it will double the amount of cards it offered last year and will host 20 cards of racing starting June 19. More than $1 million in purses will be distributed over the summer season, and will thus be the highest average purses per program in the history of the Hippodrome de Quebec.
The trotters and pacers will meet at Expocité´s site every Sunday at 1:00 p.m. until July 10. The races will then continue with two programs per week, Saturdays and Sundays, with a 1:00 p.m. first-race post time.
As of August 7, there will be a short break to allow the presentation of the Expo Quebec (Agricultural Exhibition) through September 3. Live horse racing will then resume every Saturday and Sunday until September 25.
Three major events will take place during the season. First, on September 10, top Canadian-bred or owned two-year-old trotters and pacers will compete in the $15,000 Lucien Bombardier Pace and $15,000 Roger White Trot which will commemorate the legends of Canadian harness racing.
The season would not be complete without the distinguished Five-Miles race, which will take place on September 25. The historic event is the traditional horse race the old capital has proudly hosted for over one hundred years. The race, a 10-lap tradition known as the Standardbred Marathon, is the oldest horse race in Quebec and still captivates the interest of thousands of spectators crowded along the track, vividly recalling the times when races were contested amongst the common people to obtain the monarchy's favour for their town.
Activities will unfold in a rural atmosphere this season, and, for the opening day on June 19, the public is invited to a festive celebration beginning at 10:30 a.m., where nostalgia will be honoured by selling hot dogs at a price of 50 cents. All revenues from the sale will be donated to the Maurice Tanguay Foundation. Music will be performed by the Roland Martel orchestra, composed of 17 musicians, who will play the beautiful dances of yesteryear.
Quebec's Jockey Club team, under the chairmanship of Tony Infilise, promises a colourful summer at the Hippodrome de Quebec.
(With files from the Quebec Jockey Club)