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Georgian Drops September Dates

Published: August 29, 2013 6:44 pm ET

Last Comment: September 1, 2013 1:20 am ET | 10 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

The Director of the Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) has considered and approved an application for variance from Great Canadian Gaming Corporation (GCGC) that will result in the cancellation of the eight race dates approved for Georgian Downs in the month of September 2013.

Through a Notice to the Industry issued April 12, 2013, followed by Reasons for Decision issued April 29, the Director approved the 2013 Ontario Race Dates for May to December, based on the needs of the Ontario Racing Program (ORP) while recognizing the racetracks negotiations with Government.

In reaching those race decisions in April, the principles of the ORP were applied to balance the interests of the various components including the interest of the customer and horse supply.

GCGC made application to race 25 days of Grassroots racing to be conducted June through August. In his decision, the Director varied the application made by GCGC for Georgian Downs approving 33 Signature race dates over the months of June through September.

The reasons for the Director’s decision to vary GCGC’s application were addressed in the April 29 release.

In the absence of the Director’s variance, the decline in Signature level racing in the central Ontario would be from ten race dates per week in September 2012 to two race dates per week in September 2013. This drop occurs at a time when horse supply and demand for racing opportunities is seasonally high and the summer-season tracks have closed thereby limiting customer options.

GCGC has remained constant that its negotiated funding arrangement reflects its application for variance and that Georgian Downs is not in a financial position to offer more race days than have been contracted.

While eliminating dates at Georgian in September is contrary to several tenets of the ORP, the Director respects the negotiated arrangement, and therefore cancels the eight race dates in September for Georgian Downs. The Director has given notice that this approval is limited to 2013 and may be reconsidered for future years as the ORP evolves.

The Director notes that the deficiency of Signature race dates in central Ontario for September created by this decision should equally create a market opportunity for another racetrack operator.

Please be advised that any aggrieved party has the right to appeal the Director’s decision to the Commission.

Steve Lehman
Executive Director
Ontario Racing Commission


September 1, 2013 - 1:20 amWhy not transfer the dates to

Basil Kealey SAID...

Why not transfer the dates to Kawartha Downs.

August 31, 2013 - 12:08 amIs anyone considering making

Georg Leber SAID...

Is anyone considering making the appeal? I think we are all aggreived parties. The ORC should be cancelling their racing license. At the very least the Liberal government should stand up here. The OLG should pull their gaming license if indeed we are now partners with the OLG.

If not the OLG, ORC and Liberals are being taken advantage of by GCGC. I think the ORC might like someone to appeal.

Georg Leber-ICR Racing

August 30, 2013 - 4:09 pmGeorgian Downs nor GCGC is to

Jim Singer SAID...

Georgian Downs nor GCGC is to blame.

They fulfilled their agreement to race 25 race as they said they would.

Why the ORC gave them additoinal dates beyond what they had a contract for is the million dollar question. This should come as no surprise as this was published early enough in the year. The fact that the ORC didn't say anything sooner is the question we should be asking.

No operator can make money, without funding they cannot race. In fact, most tracks are expected to ante up any additional funds needed to sustain the operation, taken from their lease payments...would you do that ?

Georgian does not drive any significant handle, but does provide opportunity for the horse people to race. A problem in itself.

Boycotting the slots isn't the answer...the owner doesn't make slot money any longer.

GCGC put their hand up to race at both of their tracks as did the should thank them, and go on your merry way. They are taking a hit to race, and have significant cost exposure.

I believe the same thing happened at Flamboro for April...hey agreed to race, which was scheduled for they will be dark at a bad time of year...most of this makes no my opionion, the regulator is to blame..

August 30, 2013 - 10:41 amTOO BAD THIS COMES AT THIS



August 30, 2013 - 8:27 am"GCGC made application to

Lynne Magee SAID...

"GCGC made application to race 25 days of Grassroots racing to be conducted June through August. In his decision, the Director varied the application made by GCGC for Georgian Downs approving 33 Signature race dates over the months of June through September."

"GCGC made application to race 25 days of Grassroots racing to be conducted June through August. In his decision, the Director varied the application made by GCGC for Georgian Downs approving 33 Signature race dates over the months of June through September."

What a joke that was! Bonuses due at GCGC??

August 29, 2013 - 10:01 pmThis is such a joke!! That's

Ben Paniccia SAID...

This is such a joke!! That's why we moved all are horses down to the united states. No one has any onions in this country and the once proud horse industry in Canada will go down fast.

August 29, 2013 - 9:12 pmOkay the way I see it is

Okay the way I see it is Kawartha Downs has money and no race dates Georgian has dates and no money. This makes absolutly no sence to me. That means there will be approx. 350 extra horses from these 2 tracks needing a place to race. So why not give KD the race dates or give Georgian the money from KD? The whole thing just makes me sick. Ronda Markle

August 29, 2013 - 9:09 pmwhat a great decision (not)!!

what a great decision (not)!! here we have one of the best racing facilities in ontario, and proven to need the extra dates, going to be sitting vacant for another undertermined amount of time. this isnt slowly bleeding the industry, its cutting the head right off it! more stability is needed in these kinds of decisions. there is alot of owners putting their money, trainers putting their time on the line with no diffinitive plan for our future. how are we expected to keep going on?

August 29, 2013 - 8:15 pmwhom??? was present on behalf

whom??? was present on behalf of the horse participants to suggest alternative plans or funding disbursements,,,to the monies lost in earnings to all involved.therefore i ask this question,,,is it legal to convict a man before he is given a hearing?

August 29, 2013 - 7:59 pmConsidering its GCGC who

Considering its GCGC who anyone with a brain knows would be more than happy to pull the plug on racing at both Georgian and Flamboro, is anyone surprised? By the way nice to come out with this 5 days before they were to race.

How in this day and age of total devastation in the racing industry in Ontario does the ORC allow them to cut the 8 dates, is beyond comprehension. Now we have Kawartha closed as well as Georgian closed, do people who race truck the 4 hours to Grand River or Rideau and get in once or twice a month if they are lucky?

What part does the ORC not understand about GCGC. They just received 30 something million from the OLG, made a deal with the Government to pay their racing costs and yet they still do not want to race the 8 days to allow horsemen who are already struggling from low purses and lack of racing opportunities to help try and feed their families. The ORC should be ashamed of themselves for allowing this to happen.

It is another slap in the face to all horsemen who have raced and supported GCGC over the years. Please remember that its the horsemen who made them rich and allowed them to make millions off of the slots. If horsemen ever want to blockade the slots, Georgian and Flamboro should be the first stop.

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