Hastings Sale in the Works

Hastings Park, which was put up for sale in February by parent company Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG), already has a buyer. Woodbine has entered into a contract with an arm of the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation to purchase the racetrack in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. The Vancouver Sun is reporting that Great Canadian then plans to sell a 40% interest to Wall Financial Group, a prominent real estate development company. The sale is set to close April 8.

WEG purchased Hastings in 2002 and has already upgraded the facility, spending more than $3 million on the grandstand and the grounds. Hopes were high that legislation allowing slot machines in the city of Vancouver, and at the track, would be passed in 2003, but that measure was stalled and is set for further review in June. Hastings Entertainment general manager Phil Heard has also been working to get a number of off-track betting sites, called teletheaters, up and running in the area, but none has yet opened.

According to the Sun article, Wall Financial does not necessarily have development as its top priority. Its chairman and CEO, Peter Wall, is a horse owner.