The Ontario Harness Horse Association July 25 offered its support to the proponents behind the EquiLottery initiative, a new horse racing product that adds lottery money directly into on-track handle.
"The concept behind this product is one of the few that I have seen that actually integrates horse racing with the lottery as promised," stated OHHA general manager Brian Tropea in an EquiLottery release. "If there is to be real integration between horse racing and the Ontario Lottery and Gaming, this would appear to be one product that can be implemented fairly easily and be of benefit to the racing industry as well as returning additional revenue to the OLG.
"Without any clear proposal to increase revenues in order to raise purses, it is critical to establish this integration or partnership with the OLG as quickly as possible. We have seen an exodus of horses as well as participants from the racing industry in Ontario and, without significant changes to the racing program, it is inevitable that this trend will continue" stated OHHA president Ken Hardy.
EquiLottery president Brad Cummings said the Ontario racing community has been receptive.
"The support we've received from the Ontario racing community has been tremendous as we strive to bring new revenue streams and heightened exposure to this exciting sport and important Ontario industry," Cummings said in a release. "I look forward to further talks with all related interests as we work together to find a way for the provincial racing industry to survive and thrive."