The 64th live horse racing season at Assiniboia Downs won’t break from the gate for another week.
The interprovincial travel restrictions and quarantine requirements have resulted in some unexpected travel delays for horsemen who had planned to be ready to race next week. As a result, Assiniboia Downs has decided to reschedule its opening day to Mon., May 24, 2021.
“There is so much that goes into the opening of the meet so it is disappointing for sure,” said Assiniboia Downs CEO Darren Dunn. “However, we felt it was the responsible approach to give it another week to get everyone here safely, following all necessary protocols. Then we can start the season strong with the first racing program on Victoria Day Monday.”
The two days that are being rescheduled, along with one additional race day, will be added to the end of the racing schedule to offer 51 days of racing as opposed to the original 50 days. Live racing will take place on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings with a post time of 7:30 p.m. and Assiniboia Downs will be one of the few tracks that will be running in Canada this month.
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FORT ERIE RACETRACK also announced May 14 that its season will be delayed.
Opening day at the border oval will be postponed due to Thursday’s provincial announcement that stay-at-home orders will continue across Ontario through to June 2. The 2021 racing season was originally scheduled to begin on June 1, but will now be rescheduled for a later date. Racing will commence when the province ends the lockdown and gives approval for horseracing to resume in Ontario. Fort Erie’s backstretch will remain open in order to provide essential care for horses.
“Following the government’s announcement and keeping in line with the province’s COVID-19 guidelines, the track will remain closed for racing at this time,” said Drew Cady, general manager of the Fort Erie Live Racing Consortium. “We are ready to begin our racing season and will continue to work with Ontario Racing and the province to safely commence live racing as quickly as possible.”
When the season begins, live racing will run on Mondays at 1 p.m. and Tuesdays at 4 p.m