The Director of the Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) today announced measures to begin the process of determining the 2013 race date schedule, and to facilitate the continuance of pari-mutuel wagering beginning January 1, 2013.
The interim 2013 race date schedule will be based on the approved 2012 schedule. This action has been taken, understanding that the work of industry and the government to secure a transition plan needs time to develop.
The ORC anticipates that as work on the new model progresses, it may result in applications for variance from most tracks across Ontario, as is permitted under the Ontario Racing Program.
In the first of a staged process to establish a 2013 race date calendar, the ORC will be accepting applications for variance from racetracks and other interested persons for the dates currently scheduled from January through March 2013. Applications must be received by the deadline of November 30. The ORC will issue final calendars for this period by December 7.
These measures are guided by Policy Directive 3-2007 Race Date Allocation, which states that approval of a schedule of race dates for any racetrack is approved for all future years, subject to application for change.
The purpose of this approach is: 1. To ensure betting permits for all licensed racetracks are continued and the wagering customer is served. (Provincially-approved 2013 race dates are required under Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency regulations relating to pari-mutuel permits.) 2. To allow adequate time to permit the work of industry and government to continue; and 3. To provide a structure for managing change.
Racetracks that intend to operate in 2013 are required to submit their application for a Licence to Operate a Racetrack by November 19, 2012.
The ORC expects to meet with racetrack associations and horsepeople’s organizations in the coming week to discuss the process moving forward, including coordination with government and industry efforts to ensure a race date schedule for the coming year.