The Canadian horse racing industry

Canadian horse racing

Horse racing is one of the first sports to become global, mainly because it has everything we want: luck (we can only take care of the horses, but they are the ones racing), technique (the way a jockey motivates and controls the horse) and that great feeling of adrenaline, right till the end.

Mix those aspects with a lot of money, and it is not surprising that most countries in the world have some sort of national horse race competition, as well as developed betting systems – for that, besure to take advantage of great horse racing software. With that in mind, today, we will be taking a look at the appearance and evolution of this sport, in Canada.

The Beginning

For a couple of centuries now, horse racing has been bringing adrenaline, joy, and sometimes misfortune to many Canadians. They started by breeding horses for transportation and work, but quickly realized they could be the source of some after-dark fun. After years of small events and testing the waters, in 1767, in Quebec City, the first big event was held. Its first place price was a modest amount of $40 and its winner? Modesty!

Fast forward a few decades and you’ll see many more races, but almost exclusively run by the military. However, that all changed with the creation of the Upper Canada Turf, in 1837. The races were held in the Garrison Commons and they were watched by a large number of people, with betting already involved in the sport. Lands and wives were lost, but a lot of adrenaline was felt.  

The Boom

With the success of the Upper Canada Turf, many other places started holding their own races and the sport felt its great boom, in Canada. Sadly, there weren’t enough fast horses and in many places, there were only 1 or 2 winners, each time. You can imagine how bored people started to become, as the races were usually decided before the starting shot.

Luckily, it all changed, as in 1860 the Queen’s Plate was established. A lot of money and advertising made this place a reference in terms of global horse racing and sizable prize-motivated breeders from all over the world started to travel to Canada, to compete in this race. This, consequently, increased the quality of horses throughout the country, which made the races more competitive and watched by more participants. Queen’s Plate remains, till today, the oldest racehorse track in North America.

The Present

Sports usually suffer a lot of changes throughout the years, however, it is not the case with horse racing. The rules have changed a bit, but the main structure of the event still remains untouched. Nowadays, there are quite a few places where you can watch horses racing in Canada, with 25 races in Grade 3, 14 in Grade 2, and 7 in Grade 1. Lastly, there are the Canadian Triple Crown Races, the ones all jockeys want to compete in. Funny enough, one of them is the already mentioned Queen’s Plate, in the Woodbine Racetrack.

Last Words

As you can see, the history of horse racing in Canada isn’t that much different from other places. At first, you had horses for work and transportation, then they started breeding them for races, and, ultimately, you had one event that changed it all and made it the sport it is today.

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