Woodbine racetrack is the best-know racecourse in Canada, located in Ontario, Toronto and plays host to both Thoroughbred and Harness horse racing. It’s also a training facility to get horses ready to race, which offers the highest quality racing in the country with fantastic facilities for racegoers.
History of the racetrack
Greenwood Raceway was built in 1874 as the Woodbine Race Course on the shores of Lake Ontario in eastern Toronto. The ‘Old Woodbine’ (a nickname it received after the construction of the new facility in 1956) held the Queen’s Plate (Canada’s oldest thoroughbred horse race, founded in 1860) on July 1st 1881.
As mentioned the new racetrack opened on June 12, 1956, built at a cost of CA$13 million. It was initially known as the New Woodbine Racetrack. It dropped the “New” in 1963. The old track was converted to a combined thoroughbred and standardbred track known thereafter as Old Woodbine. The two thoroughbred and two standardbred meets conducted at Greenwood were transferred to the new Woodbine in 1994.
On June 30, 1959, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh attended the 100th running of the Queen’s Plate, and Queen Elizabeth II again on July 4, 2010, during part of her state visit to Canada, attended the 151st running of The Queen’s Plate Stakes, as well as taking part in the presentation of trophies.
The track was the opening venue for the 1976 Summer Paralympics and some of the sporting events were held here. The Breeders’ Cup was held at Woodbine in 1996. The Arlington Million was held at Woodbine in 1988. It’s also home to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame.
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There are multiple tracks at Woodbine Raceway with the outermost E. P. Taylor turf course for thoroughbreds, completed in 1994, being 1.5 miles (2.4 km) long with a chute allowing races of 1.125 miles (1.811 km) to be run around one turn. Inside the Taylor course is a 1 mile (1.6 km) synthetic course for Thoroughbreds. Since April 9, 2016, the surface has had a Tapeta surface laid on it. There are two chutes which facilitate seven-furlong races.
Parts of the current E. P. Taylor turf course originally formed part of a long turf chute that crossed over the dirt course to the inner turf oval at the top of the stretch. This track was used for several major races, including Secretariat’s final race in the 1973 Canadian International, until the entire E. P. Taylor course was completed in 1994.
The new track was designed to hold 40,000 spectators, have ample parking, three racecourses and two training tracks. It had stabling for 1,000 horses and accommodation for 700 employees. The grandstand, designed to get as many people as close to the finish line as possible, included several restaurants and cafeterias. The track has been modernised since then with numerous fine dining opportunities on-course while enjoying the exhilarating action on the racetrack. There is also a casino for those that fancy their luck after racing.
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Online betting with RaceBets
Racebets offers odds on both gallop and trot/harness racing from Canada, while also allowing users to view races.
Canadians as a nation are keen punters on their own horse racing as well as events in the United States and beyond, which makes Racebets the ideal place for any racing enthusiast.
Racebets provides all your betting options including win, place, show and the exotics: quinellas, exactas, trifectas and Superfecta.
Canadian racing is covered by a pari-mutuel (totalisator) system, with its pools commingled with those of the United States. It is overseen by the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA)
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