Horse population balloons to 72 in advance of season
Happiness is a stall window to look out of while waiting for an early morning jog and breakfast. REs Aiden (left) and Daddy Let Me Drive are two of D.F. Beaton’s horses in Port Hood who are eagerly awaiting the start of harness racing at Inverness Raceway.
May 12, 2021
-by Bill Dunphy
We have the horses; the question is, do we have the season?
For the second straight year, COVID-19 is messing with the start of the Maritime harness racing season.
At Inverness Raceway, qualifying races which were supposed to get underway on May 23, are on hold until the latest lockdown is lifted. The racing season was scheduled to begin on June 6 but that will likely get pushed to the middle of the month.
“Hopefully it’s just a week or so, but we’ll see at the end of the two-week lockdown,” said Raceway president Barry Watson.
He said the province changed harness racing’s designation from an outdoor business to sports and recreation has created some problems and that the Nova Scotia Harness Racing Commission is attempting to change back.
“As a business last year, we were never shut down, but under sports and recreation, harness racing is a special event and those aren’t allowed. We’re hoping they will re-categorize us after the two weeks.”
Racing and qualifying at Truro Raceway and Northside Downs are also on hold during the lockdown. Racing at the Charlottetown Driving Park got underway on Saturday.