TORONTO — A shortened 2020 thoroughbred racing season proved very expensive to Woodbine Leisure.
The group introduced Friday the diminished marketing campaign produced an all-sources deal with of $462.042 million. That was down greater than $50 million in comparison with 2019 ($516,189 million).
The 2020 season lined 96 race days due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Racing started June 6 as an alternative of April 18 and ended Nov. 22 moderately than Dec. 13 as Toronto was positioned right into a lockdown stage for the second time as a part of the province’s COVID-19 response.
That put horse racing at Woodbine Racetrack on the restricted checklist.
The abbreviated season included 35 fewer race days — and 305 fewer races than in 2019, based on Woodbine Leisure.
“Like many companies, the COVID-19 pandemic considerably impacted our enterprise and your entire horse racing business in Ontario,” Jim Lawson, the CEO of Woodbine Leisure, stated in an announcement. “Nonetheless, I’m very happy with how we responded and look ahead to working with all of our stakeholders as we proceed to handle the continued impacts brought on by the pandemic.”
Woodbine said the diminished ’20 season, which was initially scheduled for 133 race days, was a main contributor to a ten.5 per cent lower in all-sources deal with. The closure of Woodbine Racetrack and Woodbine Mohawk Park to the general public and Woodbine Leisure’s Champions’ Teletheatre Community have been additionally vital contributors, it added.
“The truth that we have been capable of restrict the lower in deal with to 10.5 per cent regardless of shedding almost a 3rd of our scheduled race dates speaks to the power of our thoroughbred racing product and our intensive efforts and give attention to our wagering enterprise in response to the pandemic,” stated Lawson.
Woodbine stated discipline dimension per race was 8.9, up from 8.2 in 2019.
“With the beginning of the season being postponed greater than a month, this allowed extra horses to be prepared for the beginning of the season which resulted in elevated discipline sizes,” stated Lawson. “Whereas any development in discipline dimension is at all times encouraging, it continues to catch the attention of us as it’s impacting our capability to maximise our wagering deal with and help the purse funds.”
Though followers weren’t permitted to attend the 2020 Queen’s Plate, the race generated the third-highest deal with in its historical past. The 13-race card generated a complete of $14.533 million together with $3.495 million on the Plate, which was gained by 13/1-longshot Mighty Coronary heart.
This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Dec. 4, 2020.
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