Fort Erie Live Racing Consortium announced today the rescheduled opening day for Fort Erie Race Track. Live racing for the 2021 racing season will return on Tuesday, June 15 at 4 p.m. This year’s racing season was originally scheduled to begin on June 1 but due to an extended provincial lockdown, the track’s opening day was postponed.
Yesterday, the Government of Ontario announced a three-step plan to gradually reopen the economy. Horse racing will be allowed to reopen in Step One of their ‘Roadmap to Reopen.’ Live racing will resume on June 15 pending the province meets its target to complete 60% of first dose COVID-19 vaccinations for adults in Ontario.
“We are very grateful that the province has recognized the importance of racing in Ontario in Step One of their ‘Roadmap to Reopen,” said Drew Cady, general manager of the FELRC. “All the horse people at the Fort are following strict COVID-19 protocols in order to get this racing season up and going as soon as possible.”
Live racing at the border oval will take place on Mondays at 1 p.m. as well as Tuesday afternoons at 4 p.m. Following strict COVID-19 protocols in line with the provincial government, the track will remain closed to spectators. The backstretch remains open to essential workers who oversee the care of the horses.
Three race days will be lost at the start of the season. The FELRC may consider adding these race days at the end of the season, however, this is to be confirmed and pending regulatory approvals. Despite the delayed meet, Fort Erie has increased the number of race days from 40 to 42 for the 2021 racing season.