Fact checked by Wilbur Thompson.
Woodbine Mohawk Park in Campbellville, Ontario, recently made a significant announcement pertaining to its harness racing operations. The Race Office of the renowned Standardbred track issued a press release, notifying participants about updated protocols for driver changes and qualifying entries in harness races. For now, all driver changes must now be submitted by 9 a.m. on the day following each draw.
Woodbine Mohawk Park, owned and operated by Woodbine Entertainment Group, stands as a premier harness racing venue in Campbellville. Alongside its world-class Standardbred racing, the facility boasts a sprawling slot machine venue with over 1,000 machines, managed by Great Canadian Entertainment. The revenue generated from gaming activities is then allocated to support the purses in horse racing.
The Race Office of the racetrack issued a statement on Monday, disseminating information regarding the updated protocols for driver changes and qualifying entries in harness racing. Under the new guidelines, driver changes for Thursday races must be submitted before 9 a.m. on Tuesday following the draw. Similarly, changes for Friday and Saturday races should be filed by Wednesday at 9 a.m., and adjustments for Monday races need to be completed by Thursday.
Moreover, the track announced that all entries for qualifiers must be submitted through Standardbred Canada’s online entry system. Additionally, it emphasized that the entry box for Friday’s qualifiers will close on Thursday mornings at 10:30 a.m. The Central Ontario Standardbred Association assured trainers of their assistance in navigating the online entry system should they encounter any difficulties.
Celebrating a Momentous Milestone
In the final week of April, Woodbine Entertainment commemorated a significant milestone—six decades since the inauguration of Woodbine Mohawk Park. With over 60 years of hosting top-tier horse racing, the track has witnessed countless unforgettable moments for both Ontarians and audiences beyond. Special festivities were organized throughout the anniversary weekend to mark the occasion.
As part of the celebrations, the track treated fans with delightful surprises. The first 300 attendees on Friday and Saturday were greeted with celebratory cupcakes upon entering. Strolling entertainers provided additional amusement, and a specialty drink was crafted for the occasion. Furthermore, the Saturday evening card featured a special program, with the seventh race named the “Mohawk 60th Anniversary Pace.”
Building on the Success of the Previous Season
In the previous year, Woodbine Mohawk Park experienced an exceptionally fruitful Standardbred season, resulting in a record-breaking all-sources handle of CA$444 million. This remarkable achievement was attained over the course of 218 racing cards. The 2022 season marked the first full season without any cancellations or delays, surpassing the previous handle record of CA$364 million set in 2019.
Throughout the season, a total of 2,293 races were contested across the 218 racing cards. The average handle per race amounted to CA$193,707.73, an improvement over the 2021 average of CA$191,398.92 and 1,693 races. Notably, the foreign handle contributed CA$329 million to the overall figure, with the Home Market Area accounting for CA$81 million of the total handle.