March 5, 2021

The following rule changes take effect on April 6, 2021. See Info Bulletin: Standardbred Rule Revisions (Winter 2021) for more information.

Notation:
Underline = new text
Strikethrough = deleted text
… = gaps where there are other rules that are not changed

Scroll or select a chapter to see the revisions.

 

CHAPTER 1: MANDATE AND PRELIMINARY

1.09   If any case occurs which is not or which is alleged not to be provided for by the rules, it shall be determined by the Judges or the Registrar as the case may be, in such manner as they think is in the best interests of racing. Provided however, the Registrar in his or her absolute discretion may waive the breach of any of the rules, which waiver or breach the Registrar does not consider prejudicial to the best interests of racing.

1.09.01   The Registrar in his or her absolute discretion may waive the breach of any of the rules, which waiver or breach the Registrar does not consider prejudicial to the best interests of racing. The Registrar’s waiver of or refusal to waive a rule is not subject to appeal.

CHAPTER 2: DEFINITIONS

Officials, Racing Officials The following categories shall be considered Officials, or Racing Officials:

  1. Judges
  2. Race Secretary and/or Assistant Race Secretary
  3. Timers
  4. Charter
  5. Starter
  6. A Patrol Judge or Patrol Judges in accordance with Rule 33.01
  7. Paddock Judge
  8. Equipment Inspector/Horse Identifier
  9. Assistant Paddock Judge
  10. Paddock Security Custodian
  11. Paddock Security Guard
  12. Chief Test Inspector and Test Inspectors

Ontario Sired means a horse whose sire was an Ontario Sire registered with the applicable breed registry in the horse’s conception year. 

 

CHAPTER 3: LICENCES

3.01.01  An Association shall not:

  1. Operate a raceway at which racing is conducted without applying for a licence, race dates and the post time for the first race of each program, and having them approved by the Registrar or received a temporary licence to operate pending finalization of the application for race dates;
  2. Change its race dates or the post time for the first race on any race date by more than 30 minutes, without having such change approved by the Registrar;
  3. Operate a racetrack without payment of the monthly fee for regulatory funding, as set forth each fiscal year in the Registrar’s General Directive relating to Regulatory Funding.

3.01.02  The Registrar will not approve race dates for December 24th and December 25th of any year.

3.01.03 A decision of the Registrar regarding approval or non-approval of race dates is not appealable to the HRAP.

3.02   A person shall not participate in the affairs of an Association as director, general manager, officer, pari-mutuel manager, agent, or employee of such Association without first receiving a licence from the Commission, nor shall any person participate in racing as an official, owner, driver, trainer, groom, tradesperson, registered Ontario Sires Stakes stallion owner, veterinarian, or authorized agent nor shall anyone practice his or her profession, trade, occupation, or calling, including concessionaire or pari-mutuel employee, unless such person has applied for and been issued a Commission licence classified in the appropriate category. An Association may admit to its grounds the holder of a licence to enable the licensee to have access to the area where the licensee is obliged to perform his/her duties. With permission of the Registrar, a licence will not be required for an employee of a company, partnership or person with whom the Association has an agreement to supply goods or services. The Registrar’s granting or refusal of permission is not subject to appeal.

3.07.01  Each licensee:

  1. Shall have in his or her possession a valid licence issued to the licensee whenever the licensee is:
    1. in the stable restricted area of the Association; or
    2. acting in a capacity for which a licence is required; and
  2. Shall produce his or her licence upon request by an authorized representative of the Association, a racing official or a representative or member of the Commission.

CHAPTER 4: COMMISSION ADMINISTRATION

4.02   The Registrar delegates to the Administration responsibility for the supervision of Standardbred Racing in the Province of Ontario and the duties of the Administration shall include but not be limited to the following:

  1. The issuing of orders in the name of the Registrar subject to appeal to the HRAP
  2. The making of reports to the Registrar as the Registrar requires and/or as the Administration deems fit
  3. The supervision of all Commission and Association officials and employees in the performance of their duties
  4. Deleted
  5. Deleted
  6. Deleted

The Registrar’s delegation is not subject to appeal.

 

CHAPTER 5: JUDGES AND RACING OFFICIALS

5.01  At an extended race meeting, except in the case of an emergency, there shall be a minimum of two Judges employed and appointed by the Commission, one of whom shall be designated by the Registrar as Senior Judge under whose supervision the Judges shall, collectively, carry out all the duties and responsibilities specified in the Rules. All decisions of the Judges shall be determined by majority vote. In cases where there are only two Judges officiating, the Senior Judge or the Judge designated as the Senior Judge by the Registrar, shall have in addition to the regular vote, a casting vote. The Registrar’s appointments and designations pursuant to this rule are not subject to appeal.

5.03  At all extended pari-mutuel race meetings there shall be the following licensed racing officials approved by the Registrar:

  1. Judges;
  2. Race Secretary and/or Assistant Race Secretary;
  3. Timers;
  4. Charter;
  5. Starter;
  6. A Patrol Judge or Patrol Judges in accordance with Rule 33.01;
  7. Paddock Judge;
  8. Equipment Inspector/Horse Identifier;
  9. Assistant Paddock Judge;
  10. Paddock Security Custodian;
  11. Paddock Security Guard;
  12. Chief Test Inspector and Test Inspectors;
  13. Deleted.

5.07  An Racing Official or an Official shall not occupy or serve, without the consent of the Registrar, act in more than one official position. and then only if the combined duties can be performed efficiently and adequately and without conflict of responsibility. Subject to ratification by the Registrar, the Judges may approve the filling of any emergency vacancy of an official position. The Registrar’s decision regarding his or her consent is not subject to appeal.

5.10 A showing of any past race, when available, shall be ordered by the Judges upon the request of any owner, driver or trainer who had a horse start in such a race, and such showing shall be held at a time fixed by the Judges as soon as practical after the race in question. A showing of any past race, when available, shall be ordered by the Judges upon request in writing of a member of the public, which showing shall be at a time and place fixed by the Judges. At least one of the three Judges shall attend all showings of the race and shall explain to those present at the showing what happened in the review.

CHAPTER 6: VIOLATIONS, PENALTIES AND EXPULSIONS

6.16  Any call, decision or penalty imposed by the Judges can be removed or modified by the Registrar and is subject to appeal in accordance with the Rules.

6.46.02    The Registrar may establish a list of drugs, substances or medications for purposes of Rule 6.46.01 and may impose conditions to the possession or use of the drug, substance or medication. The Registrar’s established list and imposed conditions are not subject to appeal.

6.47.08   The Registrar may approve a facility to conduct a post-mortem and testing if:

  1. The Registrar is satisfied that the facility is adequately equipped and secure to carry out the post-mortem and testing;
  2. The Registrar is satisfied that the facility operator is competent and that the individuals who will carry out the post-mortem and testing have the requisite training and professional designations or requirements to do so, including a veterinary pathologist; and
  3. The facility operator and the Registrar have entered into an arrangement, memorandum of understanding or agreement with respect to, among other things, the standards for the carrying out of and reporting on the post-mortem and testing, the confidentiality and use of the results of the post-mortem and testing and any reports prepared therefrom, including use for research purposes for the betterment of racing, protection of horses and their health, and enforcement purposes.

The Registrar’s approval or refusal of a facility is not subject to appeal.

6.48.03   The Registrar shall establish a protocol for the collection of or to obtain biological samples from horses and for the testing for the indication of the administration of erythropoietin or any of its synthetic derivatives. Licensees shall comply with the protocol. The Registrar’s establishment of the protocol and the content of the protocol are not subject to appeal.

6.48.04   The Registrar may approve one or more tests where he or she is satisfied that the testing methodology used is appropriate to determine whether or not the sample will result in the indication of the administration of erythropoietin or any of its synthetic derivatives. The Registrar’s approval or refusal to approve tests is not subject to appeal.

6.48.05   The Registrar may approve a laboratory operator to conduct the testing:

  1. If he or she is satisfied that the laboratory is adequately equipped and secure to carry out the testing;
  2. If he or she is satisfied that the laboratory operator is competent and that the individuals who will carry out the testing have the requisite training to do so; and
  3. The laboratory operator and the Registrar have entered into an arrangement, memorandum of understanding or agreement with respect to, among other things, the standards for the carrying out of the testing, the reporting of the results of the testing, the confidentiality and use of the results of the testing and any reports prepared therefrom, including use for research purposes for the betterment of racing, protection of the horse and the health of the horse, and enforcement purposes.

The Registrar’s approval or refusal of a laboratory is not subject to appeal.

6.48.08   For purposes of testing for the indication of the administration of erythropoietin or any of its synthetic derivatives in the biological sample, the Registrar shall establish by Directive the detectable limit for each test that has been approved. The establishment of the detectable limits and provisions are not subject to appeal.

CHAPTER 7: RACING ASSOCIATIONS 

7.01  Associations conducting extended meetings shall provide a paddock which shall have security and maintain records of all persons entering and leaving. The paddock must be constructed and policed so as to exclude unauthorized persons. Associations failing to comply with this rule, after notice from the Registrar, shall be subject to a monetary penalty.

7.02  Associations shall provide in the paddock:

  1. The services of a blacksmith during racing hours;
  2. Suitable extra equipment necessary to prevent unnecessary delay to the racing program; and
  3. Direct communication facilities to the Judges’ stand; and
  4. Suitable equipment, including backup equipment, capable of scanning identifying microchips and reading temperatures in racehorses.

7.03  As a condition of its Racetrack Operator’s Licence, an Association shall provide:

  1. A Judges’ stand, acceptable to the Registrar, to be located and constructed so as to afford the Judges an unobstructed view of the entire racing strip and having adequate facilities acceptable to the Registrar for the carrying out of their duties. Such adequate facilities to include washroom, outside telephone line and speaker phone to the paddock;
  2. Adequate security measures to ensure that unauthorized persons do not gain entrance to the Judges’ room in the Judges’ stand unless invited by the Judges;
  3. Offices within the grounds of each raceway for the use and at the disposal of the Commission’s designated representatives for the purposes of licensing and for the Judges to carry out their pre and post-race duties. These facilities are to be acceptable to the Registrar and will be subject to inspection at any time.

7.04  At extended meetings where pari-mutuel wagering is conducted, Associations shall make available to the public in an easily accessible manner, a program which shall provide as a minimum:

  1. Name, sex, colour and sire and dam of horses;
  2. Names of owners and lessees of horses;
  3. Names of breeders of horses;
  4. Drivers’ first and last names and colours;
  5. In claiming races, the price for which a horse may be claimed;
  6. Gross purse money for each race designated in dollars; and
  7. Current summary of starts in purse races during the current year. The summary shall include the number of starts, firsts, seconds and thirds and also the earnings and best winning time for the current year. The best winning time must have been earned in either a purse or non-purse race, but not in a time trial. Qualifying races shall not be counted as a start or shown in the summary, but a winning time in a qualifying race must be shown in the summary and so designated;
  8. The last six official past performance lines, if the horse has started six times at the gait;
  9. Designation of drivers racing with provisional licences;
  10. Designation of pacers that are racing without hopples. In mixed races, the gaits of each horse shall be indicated by the words pacer or trotter beside their names;
  11. Consolidation of races conducted at non-extended meetings. Consolidated lines shall include date, place, time of race, name of driver, finish position, track condition and distance, if race was not at one mile. Such races contested in heats or more than one dash may be consolidated into a single performance line;
  12. Designation of a mare that has been spayed when such information is made available to the Association;
  13. Summary of starts in purse races during the preceding year; and
  14. Deleted.

7.05  Races shall not be conducted until, in the opinion of the Judges, the Association has caused the racing strip to be suitably prepared for racing.

7.06  Associations shall post track rules in the paddock and the race office. Track rules approved by the Registrar may be enforced by the Judges and monetary penalties or suspensions imposed.

7.07  Associations must provide forty-eight hours notice to any participant to vacate from the grounds any horse that is legally upon their premises.

7.08  The Commission and its designated representatives, in the performance of their duties, shall, subject to the Horse Racing Licence Act, 2015, have the right of full and complete entry to all parts of the grounds and buildings of any Association, whether or not racing is being conducted by the Association at the time.

7.09  An Association shall have present during qualifying races and during the regular racing program an ambulance or mobile first aid vehicle, equipped and operated by the St. John Ambulance Brigade or equivalent, for participants and patrons.

7.10  An association shall have a horse ambulance readily available on race and qualifying days for the removal of injured animals.

7.10.01    An Association shall have warning lights available for use by the Judges in the event that the Judges determine that there is a health or safety concern on the racetrack requiring the Drivers to proceed with caution.

7.10.02    An Association shall have a siren available for the use of the Judges in the event that the Judges determine that there is an emergency or accident requiring that the race be stopped.

7.11  An Association is responsible for the general supervision and security of its meeting.

7.12  An Association shall provide security of the grounds acceptable to the Registrar during the period for which the race dates have been granted.

7.13  Any Association allowing a suspended, disqualified or excluded person or horse to participate in racing after notice from the Registrar, shall be subject to a monetary penalty.

7.14  An Association during the hours of racing should not permit any unlicensed children to be admitted to the stable area unless in the custody of an adult and such children must remain in the custody of an adult at all times while in the stable area.

7.15  No Association shall allow a person under 18 years of age to purchase or cash a ticket. For the purposes of this rule, a “ticket” is defined as a receipt or voucher that is issued by an Association for one or more bets on a race or races. The Association shall ensure that signs are clearly posted in all areas where tickets are purchased or cashed or on any Association wagering application forms, advising the public of the age restriction.

7.16.01  Associations shall hold all monies from any source for purposes of purses in trust in one or more accounts designated as Purse Accounts for disbursement as set out in 7.16.05.

7.16.02  Associations shall deposit all monies received for purposes of purses into the Purse Account(s) which include:

  1. Deleted.
  2. From nomination, sustaining, starting or similar fees for added money events within 5 days of receipt;
  3. From pari-mutuel wagers (including the share of commissions on live, inter-track, export, simulcast and any other forms of betting authorized by permit by Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency) within 10 business days of receipt or settlement;
  4. From any other source, including reimbursement of a purse that is required to be repaid, within 10 business days of receipt or settlement.

7.16.03    An Association may, where authorized in writing by the Registrar, deposit the monies received from the fees for added money events or from pari-mutuel wagers into another account designated for that purpose and hold the monies in that account subject to the terms imposed by the Registrar.

7.16.04  Any interest earned on the monies received from any source for purposes of purses less reasonable banking charges incurred and paid for with respect to the Purse Account(s) shall be deemed to be monies received for purposes of purses.

7.16.05  An Association shall disburse the monies from the Purse Account(s) only as follows:

  1. To pay purses in accordance with the Rules of Racing; or
  2. Deleted
  3. To reimburse owners for races that are cancelled or races that are declared ‘no contest’ by the Registrar or his delegate; or
  4. For other purposes which are approved by the Registrar that are for the benefit of racing or will provide benefits to all or a sizeable proportion of horsepeople.

The Association, in a manner satisfactory to the Registrar, shall at the time of disbursement disclose or cause to be disclosed to owners, trainers and others who receive purse money, the purposes under (d) above and the amount of any monies disbursed for such purposes.

7.16.06  The costs for the management and administration of the Purse Account(s) or such other account as the Registrar may permit in writing shall not be paid from monies that have been received for purposes of purses.

7.16.07  An Association shall manage and administer the purse account(s) or such other account as the Registrar may authorize in writing. The Association shall maintain the books and records related to the Purse Account(s) or such other account as the Registrar may authorize in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles or such other standards as may be approved in writing by the Registrar for use by the Association.

7.16.08  An Association may retain the services of or delegate responsibilities that are permitted to be delegated under this Rule to a licensed Purse Account Manager provided that:

  1. There is an agreement between the Association and the Purse Account Manager which shall be provided to the Registrar upon request;
  2. Any payments for the performance of services under this agreement are paid directly by the Association from monies other than purse monies;
  3. The Purse Account Manager’s functions and activities are limited to clerical services related to the distribution of the purse monies;
  4. The Purse Account Manager shall be the agent of the Association in performing the services;
  5. The Association remains responsible for the payment of all purses.

7.16.09  The Association shall ensure that any person who is entitled to a purse or other payment from the monies that are intended for purposes of purses shall receive the purse or other payment. Where the person who is entitled to such purse or other payment cannot be located within one year of the end of the meeting, the Association may, with the permission of the Registrar, consider the monies as monies received for purposes of purses in the subsequent meeting.

7.16.10  The Association shall provide statements to any association of horsepeople or person with whom it has an agreement for purposes of live racing or for purposes of the regulations under the Criminal Code (Canada) with respect to the issuance of a pari-mutuel betting permit setting out the monies received for purposes of purses, the source of those monies and the disbursements made of those monies and for what purposes. The statements shall be provided either within 15 days of the end of the month in which racing occurred or within 15 days of the end of a period other than a month that has been approved by the Registrar.

7.16.11  Any responsibility regarding an approved disbursement of monies from the Purse Account(s) made by the Association ceases once the monies have been disbursed in accordance with Rule 7.16.05.

7.16.12  Within 60 days of the end of its fiscal year, the Association shall make available to the Registrar for examination, the annual statements of the Purse Account(s), and such other account that has been authorized by the Registrar. When completed, a copy of the report will be made available to the association of horsepeople. The cost of the examination and related expenses will be the responsibility of the Association.

7.16.13  Any Association, Purse Account Manager or person who contravenes the Rules with respect to purses may be assessed a monetary penalty and/or suspended by the Registrar.

7.16.14  The Association shall ensure that purse monies won are distributed to the owners, drivers, trainers and grooms within 38 days of the race. Exceptions included withholding for outcomes of appeal and by order of the Registrar.

7.17  An Association shall not make a condition of entry requiring a licensee to consent to Association personnel or their agent(s) entering the licensee’s property, including public training centres that the licensee occupies, for the purposes of

  1. Conducting search and seizure; or
  2. Collecting biological samples from horses.

7.18  Associations or their delegate shall keep on file, race patrol film or video of each race for reference or reproduction upon request of the Registrar for one year after the last racing day of the previous year.

7.01 Associations failing to comply with any rule in this chapter or a track rule, shall be subject to a monetary penalty, suspension, or revocation.

7.02.01  An Association shall not:

  1. Operate a racetrack at which racing is conducted without applying for a licence, race dates and the post time for the first race of each program, and having them approved by the Registrar;
  2. Change its race dates or the post time for the first race on any race date by more than 30 minutes, without having such change approved by the Registrar; or
  3. Operate a racetrack without payment of the monthly fee for regulatory funding.

7.02.02 A decision of the Registrar regarding approval or non-approval of race dates is not subject to appeal.

7.02.03 The Registrar will not approve race dates for December 24th and December 25th of any year.

7.03 Before performing their duties, all Officials of an Association shall be approved in writing by the Registrar. The Registrar’s approval or non-approval is not subject to appeal.

7.04.01 An Association shall provide facilities necessary for the Commission’s designated representatives to carry out their duties for the purposes of licensing and pre and post races duties.

7.04.02 Associations conducting extended meetings shall provide a paddock which shall have security and maintain records of all persons entering and leaving. The paddock must be constructed and policed so as to exclude unauthorized persons.

7.04.03 Associations conducting extended meetings shall provide a paddock that at minimum:

  1. includes the services of a blacksmith during racing hours
  2. ensures suitable extra equipment necessary to prevent unnecessary delay to the racing program; and
  3. includes direct communication facilities to the Judges’ stand.

7.04.04 An Association shall provide a Judges’ stand that:

  1. allows Judges to carry out their duties
  2. allows Judges to communicate to drivers any health or safety concern on the racetrack
  3. ensures security and safety; and
  4. is acceptable to the Registrar.

7.05.01 At extended meetings where pari-mutuel wagering is conducted, Associations shall make available to the public a printed program which shall provide as a minimum:

  1. Name, sex, colour and sire and dam of horses
  2. Names of owners and lessees of horses
  3. Names of breeders of horses
  4. Drivers’ first and last names and colours
  5. In claiming races, the price for which a horse may be claimed
  6. Gross purse money for each race designated in dollars
  7. Current summary of starts in purse races during the current year. The summary shall include the number of starts, firsts, seconds and thirds and also the earnings and best winning time for the current year. The best winning time must have been earned in either a purse or non-purse race, but not in a time trial. Qualifying races shall not be counted as a start or shown in the summary, but a winning time in a qualifying race must be shown in the summary and so designated
  8. The last six official past performance lines, if the horse has started six times at the gait
  9. Designation of drivers racing with provisional licences
  10. Designation of pacers that are racing without hopples. In mixed races, the gait of each horse shall be indicated by the words pacer or trotter beside their names
  11. Consolidation of races conducted at non-extended meetings. Consolidated lines shall include date, place, time of race, name of driver, finish position, track condition and distance, if race was not at one mile. Such races contested in heats or more than one dash may be consolidated into a single performance line
  12. Designation of a mare that has been spayed when such information is made available to the Association; and
  13. Summary of starts in purse races during the preceding year.

7.05.02  Races shall not be conducted until, in the opinion of the Judges, the Association has caused the racing surface to be suitably prepared for racing.

7.05.03   Association shall have present and readily available during all races and qualifying races appropriate ambulance or mobile first aid vehicles that are able to respond to a health or safety concern involving a participant or patron.

7.05.04  An Association shall have a horse ambulance readily available on race and qualifying days for the removal of injured animals.

7.05.05  An Association shall have warning lights available for Judges to use in the event that there is a health or safety concern on the racetrack.

7.05.06  An Association shall have a siren available for Judges to use in the event that there is an emergency or accident on the racetrack.

7.06.01  An Association is responsible for the general supervision and security of its premises.

7.06.02 An Association shall develop security measures to make restricted areas on their premises safe for the protection of licensees and property that is used in the business of racing. These security measures must be acceptable to the Registrar.

7.07   Any Association allowing a suspended, disqualified or excluded person or horse to participate in racing after notice from the Registrar, shall be subject to a monetary penalty for each violation.

7.08   An Association during the hours of racing shall not permit any unlicensed children to be admitted to the stable area unless in the custody of an adult and such children must remain in the custody of an adult at all times while in the stable area, or unless otherwise stipulated by the Registrar.

7.09   No Association shall allow a person under 18 years of age to purchase or cash a ticket. For the purposes of this rule, a “ticket” is defined as a receipt or voucher that is issued by an Association for one or more bets on a race or races. The Association shall ensure that signs are clearly posted in all areas where tickets are purchased or cashed or on any Association wagering application forms, advising the public of the age restriction, unless otherwise stipulated by the Registrar.

7.10.01 Associations shall have a system in place that ensures timely and accurate distribution of purses in accordance with the Rules of Racing.

7.10.02 Any licensee entitled to receive a purse payment from an Association, or horseperson’s organization of which the licensee is a member, may request from an Association a summary report. The request must be made within one year from the end of the relevant meeting. The summary report shall include the total purses paid, the source of all funds, and the stakes paid as a percentage of the total purses paid. An Association shall provide the summary report within 30 days of the request.

7.10.03 The Association shall ensure that any person who is entitled to a purse or other payment from the monies that are intended for purposes of purses shall receive the purse or other payment. Where the person who is entitled to such purse or other payment cannot be located within two years of the end of the meeting, the Association may, consider the monies as monies received for purposes of purses in the subsequent meeting.

7.10.04 At the request of the Registrar, at the close of each meeting, an Association shall provide a report to the Registrar with any of the following:

  1. the handle;
  2. paid attendance;
  3. total purses paid;
  4. provincial government revenue from wagering; or
  5. Association revenue from wagering for each meeting.

7.11.01    An Association shall not make a condition of entry requiring a licensee to consent to Association personnel or their agent(s) entering the licensee’s property, including public training centres that the licensee occupies, for the purposes of conducting search and seizure.

7.11.02   An Association is prohibited from collecting biological samples from a horse without the Registrar’s prior approval. The Registrar’s approval or non-approval is not subject to appeal.

7.12.01   Any owner, driver or trainer who had a horse start in a race can make a written request to the Judges to view the race video. The Judges shall fix a time for the viewing, which shall be held as soon as practical after the race in question. At least one of the three Judges shall attend the viewing explain to those present what happened in the race.

7.12.02   A Judge may require a licensee to attend a special showing of a race for the purposes of training or education.

7.12.03   Associations or their delegate shall keep on file, race video of each race for one year after the last racing day of the previous year.

7.13.01   All track rules are subject to approval by the Registrar.

7.13.02   The Registrar may approve a track rule that varies the Rules of Racing for any reason including where that variation addresses local issues specific to operations.

7.13.03   Commission Officials and Judges may enforce track rules and monetary penalties or suspensions may be imposed. Enforcement includes issuing a ruling and collecting a penalty.

7.13.04   A “suspension” in a track rule can only refer to a suspension of licence and cannot be used to refer to loss of privileges to access the property of an Association.

7.13.05   A track rule cannot add an additional penalty on a Rule of Racing except a penalty that may be applied by an Association as it relates to the conduct of their employees.

7.13.06   A track rule cannot require membership in a horseperson’s association.

7.13.07   Where the Association wishes to reference a Rule of Racing in a track rule, they must clearly and specifically identify the Rule of Racing.

7.13.08   Associations shall post track rules in the paddock and the race office and may post electronically.

CHAPTER 8: COMMISSION VETERINARIANS, OFFICIAL VETERINARIANS AND OTHER VETERINARIANS

8.01.01   The Commission Veterinarians shall be those veterinarians appointed by the Registrar to officiate at extended race meetings. Any decision with respect to the Registrar’s appointment of a Commission Veterinarian is not subject to appeal.

8.01.02   The Official Veterinarians shall be those veterinarians appointed by the Associations and approved by the Registrar to officiate at extended race meetings. At the discretion of the Registrar, the duties of the Official Veterinarian may be assumed by the Commission Veterinarian. Any decision with respect to the Registrar’s approval of an Official Veterinarian is not subject to appeal.

CHAPTER 12: QUALIFYING RACES

12.01  Qualifying races and starting gate schooling shall be held according to the demand as determined by the Registrar. The Registrar’s decision with respect to this rule is not subject to appeal.

12.07.02    Any horse that is qualified to race with or without hopples shall not be permitted to be declared to a race with or without hopples as an unless first having qualified with this equipment change. In addition to the foregoing any horse that is qualified to race without hopples and which is not on a qualifying list or the Judges’ List, is allowed one start with hopples in a qualifying race and this single performance shall not affect its eligibility to race without hopples in its next start to which it is declared.

12.10.03   Any horse that makes a break in stride on anything but a fast track, such as good, sloppy, snow, or heavy, shall be considered a clean line. Any horse charted with 3 consecutive breaks must qualify regardless of track condition.

12.10.04   Any horse participating in a qualifier that is currently qualified shall not become ineligible to be entered in a subsequent race should it be charted with a break in the unnecessary qualifier.

CHAPTER 15: CLAIMING RACES

15.01  No horse will be eligible to start in a claiming race unless the owner has provided written/electronic authorization, which must include the minimum price for which the horse may be claimed, to the race secretary at least one hour prior to post time of its race. If the horse is owned by more than one party, all parties must sign the authorization. Any question relating to the validity of a claiming authorization shall be referred to the Judges who shall have the authority to disallow a declaration or scratch the horse if they deem the authorization to be improper.

15.03 The price allowances that govern for claiming races are as follows. Any deviation from these allowances will constitute a violation:

  Colts, Stallions, Geldings and Spayed Mares  Fillies and Mares
2-year-old 75% 100%
3-year-old  50% 75%
4-year-old 25% 50%
5-year-old and up older 0 25%

Claiming prices recorded on past performance lines in the daily race program and on eligibility certificates shall not include allowances.

15.04   The claiming price, including any allowances, of each horse shall be printed on the official program adjacent to the horse’s program number and claims shall be for the amount designated, subject to correction if printed in error. Claiming prices given in past performance lines in programs and in the official performance records shall not include allowances.

15.05   In handicap claiming races, in the event of an also eligible horse moving into the race, the also eligible horse shall take the place of the horse that it replaces provided that the handicap is the same. In the event the handicap is different, the also eligible horse shall take the position on the outside of horses with a similar handicap, except when the horse that is scratched is a trailing horse, in which case the also eligible horse shall take the trailing position, regardless of its handicap. In handicap claiming races with one trailer, the trailer shall be determined as the 4th best post position unless otherwise mandated by the Registrar.

15.06.01   To be eligible to be claimed a horse must start in the event in which it has been declared to race. For the purposes of this rule, a horse shall be deemed to have started If it is behind the gate when the field is released at the starting point by the starter when the horse’s nose has reached the starting line. If a horse that has been drawn in to start in a claiming race in Ontario is scratched for reason other than being ineligible to the race, the horse shall be subject to claim in its next start in Ontario, provided such start occurs within 30 days of the date of the scratch, regardless of type and condition of the race, at the claiming price it was subject to in the race in which it was scratched. Where a horse drawn in to start in a claiming race has been declared to start in a subsequent race, the successful claimant, if any, of the horse, in the first race shall have the option of scratching the horse from the subsequent race and the 30 day provision of this section will not apply.

15.06.02 A horse may be exempt from rules 15.01 and 15.06 if it meets the following criteria:

  1. The horse has not raced in any jurisdiction in 120 days
  2. The horse is entered for a claiming price equal to or greater than the price it last started for; and
  3. At the time of entry into a claiming race, the owner or trainer has advised the Race Secretary that they are opting to declare a horse exempt from being claimed. Any failure to declare an exemption may not be remedied.

An Association shall note a declaration of exemption in the official program.
… 

15.10   Prohibitions on claims:

  1. A person shall not claim directly or indirectly his or her own horse or a horse trained or driven by him/ her that day or cause such horse to be claimed directly or indirectly for his or her own account;

15.16.01   Transfer of possession of a claimed horse to the successful claimant or their representative shall take place in the paddock immediately after the running of the race. The horse’s halter must accompany the horse. Altering or removing the horse’s shoes prior to the transfer is not permitted.

CHAPTER 17: DECLARATIONS AND DRAWING OF POST POSITIONS

17.06   Declarations submitted by mail, telephone, electronically, or other method approved by the Registrar are acceptable and shall be subject to the same terms and conditions as written declarations, providing evidence of same is deposited in the declaration box before the time specified for declarations to close and provided that adequate program information is furnished by the declarer. The race secretary or licensed delegate is responsible for depositing such declarations. A mail, facsimile, or telephone declaration must state the name of the horse, the event it is to be declared to, and be signed or made by the person who received and deposited it. It is the responsibility of the trainer to ensure that the person declaring a horse which had its last start outside Canada, advises the race secretary of where and when the horse last raced.

CHAPTER 18: PLACING AND MONEY DISTRIBUTION

18.08.02   Racetracks with pylons shall meet the following criteria regarding pylon location, and design standards:

  1. sixty (60) feet apart on the straight away
  2. forty (40) feet apart on the turns
  3. pylons leading into the passing lanes to be fifteen (15) feet or less apart
  4. thirty (30) inches in length above ground
  5. Pylons shall have the top three (3) inches of the pylon painted or taped bright orange
  6. Pylons shall be at 35 degree angle.

A horse while on stride, or part of the horse’s sulky race bike, that leaves the race course by going inside the pylons which constitutes the inside limits of the course, when not forced to do so as a result of the actions of another driver and/or horse, shall be in violation of this rule. In addition, when an act of interference causes a horse, or part of the horse’s sulky race bike, to cross inside the pylons and the horse is placed by the Judges, the offending horse shall be placed behind the horse with which it interfered. For purposes of placing the following shall apply:

  1. If a horse while on stride, or part of the horse’s sulky race bike, goes inside two (2) consecutive pylons, the offending horse shall be placed behind all horses that are lapped on to the offending horse at the wire;
  2. If a horse while on stride, or any part of the horse’s sulky race bike, goes inside three (3) or more consecutive pylons, the offending horse shall be placed last;
  3. If in the opinion of the Judges a horse while on stride, or part of the horse’s sulky race bike, goes inside a pylon(s) and that action gave the horse an unfair advantage over other horses in the race or the action helped improve its position in the race, the horse may be placed at the discretion of the Judges.

CHAPTER 22: RACING RULES

22.01   The pari-mutuel manager shall establish post time for each race and the Judges shall call the horses onto the track at such time to allow the horses to parade and be exhibited before the public but to preclude an excessive delay before the start.

  1. A curfew shall be set at 11:55 p.m., for post time for the last race on any program
  2. All sulkies race bikes must be equipped with mudguards properly affixed mudsheets and fenders at all extended meetings when deemed necessary by the Judges

  1. Horses are to be exhibited before the public at least once after the post parade, unless excused by the Judges, before going to the post. After being exhibited to the public, the horses shall be gathered by the starter and then immediately moved into their positions behind the gate. Horses may be held on the backstretch not to exceed two minutes awaiting post time, except when delayed by emergency; After being exhibited to the public in the post parade, the horses shall be gathered by the Starter and then moved into their positions behind the gate.

22.02   All races must be started with a mobile starting gate of a design approved by the Registrar. The Registrar’s granting or refusal of approval is not subject to appeal No person shall be allowed to ride in the starting gate except the starter, the driver and a patrol judge without the permission of the Judges. The starting gate must be equipped with two-way communications to the Judges’ stand and a mechanical loudspeaker to be used for the sole purpose of communicating instructions to drivers. Other use of the loudspeaker is a violation.

22.03   The Starter, with the assistance of the Judges, shall have control of the horses from the formation of the post parade until a start has been determined. For purpose of this rule, the determination of the start is when the horses have passed the starting point and have been released by the Starter.

  1. The Starter shall cause the gate to move towards the starting point, gradually increasing the speed of the gate to maximum speed
  2. The starting point will be the point marked on the inside rail, a distance of not less than 200 feet from the first turn. The Starter shall release the horses at the starting point

  1. The horses shall be deemed to have started when released by the Starter at the starting point which will be the official start unless a recall has been sounded and all horses must go the course unless dismissed by the Starter or, in the opinion of the Judges, it is impossible to do so. A horse shall be deemed to be a starter when the horse’s nose has reached the starting line
  2. If, in the opinion of the Judges or the Starter, a horse is unmanageable or liable to cause accidents or injury to any other horse or to any driver, it may be sent to the barn. When this action is taken, the Starter will notify the Judges who shall scratch the horse
  3. In case of a recall, a light visible to the drivers shall be flashed and a recall sounded. If possible, the Starter shall leave the wings of the starting gate open and gradually slow the speed of the gate to assist in stopping and turning the field. Drivers shall take up their horses and return, without delay, to the point where fields are gathered for the start
  4. There shall be no recall after the horses have been released by the Starter
  5. The Starter shall endeavour to get all horses away in position and on gait. The Starter shall only sound a recall when the starter notices any one of the following reasons:
    1. A horse scores ahead of the starting gate
    2. There is interference before the horses have reached the starting point
    3. A horse has broken equipment, which the Starter notices
    4. A horse falls before the starting point
    5. A horse coming to the starting gate in the wrong position
    6. A malfunction of the starting gate or in the interests of safety.
  1. A monetary penalty not to exceed $500.00 and/ or a suspension not to exceed five days may be applied by the Starter or by the Judges for any of the following violations contained in subsections (i)-(vii). In addition, the Judges may place the offending horse for a violation of subsections (i)(iii), (iv) or (vi) of this rule.
    1. Delaying the start
    2. Failure to obey the Starter’s instructions
    3. Allowing a horse to pass the inside or the outside wing of the gate
    4. Coming to the starting gate in the wrong position
    5. Crossing over before reaching the starting point
    6. Interference with another horse or driver during the start
    7. Failure to come into position or remain in position on the gate

  1. If a horse has not reached the Fair Start Pole when the horses are released at the starting point by the Starter, the Judges shall cause the inquiry sign to be displayed immediately and shall request the horse be scratched from the mutuels.

22.05.01   A driver shall not commit any of the following acts which are considered violations of driving rules:

  1. Strike or hook wheels with another sulky race bike;
  2. Lay off a normal pace and leave a hole when it is well within the horse’s capacity to keep the hole closed without promptly pulling to re-pass the horse, unless the failure to re-pass is necessitated for safety reasons;

  1. Fail to set or maintain a pace comparable to the class in which he/she is racing considering the horse’s ability, track conditions, weather and circumstances confronted in the race to a pace that the calibre of horses in the race are capable of, resulting in an excessively slow quarter or any other distance, considering track conditions, weather and circumstances confronted in the race

  1. Converse with other drivers from the forming of the post parade until released by the Starter and then after the finish of the race
  2. Turn a horse abruptly after the finish line of the race unless such turn is required for safety.

22.07   A driver violates the Rules if the driver fails to report any infraction that occurred during a race, or for lodging he/she lodges a complaint which the Judges deem to be frivolous.

22.14   If a horse chokes or bleeds during a race, the driver and/or trainer of that horse is required to report this to the Judges immediately after the race. This information shall be contained in the official past performance line of that horse.

22.15   If, in the opinion of the Judges, a driver is for any reason unfit or incompetent to drive, or is reckless in his or her conduct and endangers the safety of horses or other drivers in a race, he/she shall be removed and another driver substituted at any time and the offending driver may be assessed a monetary penalty, suspended or expelled. The Judges may remove a driver at any time if, in their opinion, his/her driving would not be in the best interest of harness racing.

22.17.01   A driver must be mounted in the sulky race bike at the finish of the race or the horse must be placed as not finishing.

22.17.02   A horse shall be placed as not finishing where the driver at any time during the running of the race was not mounted in the sulky race bike but was mounted in the sulky race bike at the finish of the race. In such case, the Judges may invoke the provisions of Rule 22.32 if they deem it in the public interest to do so.

22.19   Drivers shall keep both feet in the stirrups during the post parade, while in front of the grandstand and from the time the horses are brought to the starting gate until the race has been completed. Drivers shall be permitted to remove a foot from the stirrups during the course of the race solely for the purpose of pulling ear plugs and once these have been pulled, the foot must be placed back into the stirrup. If a driver’s foot is in the stirrup, he or she shall not allow his/her foot to hit a horse in any manner. Drivers who violate this rule shall be subject to a monetary penalty of $100.00 for a first violation, a monetary penalty of $300.00 for a second violation within 6 months, and a monetary penalty of $500 for a third violation within 6 months of the first violation. A fourth violation within six months will result in a 5 day suspension from driving being imposed by the Judges and the driver shall be referred to the Commission for determination of further sanction which may include a suspension, monetary penalty and/or conditions on the licence.

22.19.01   A driver shall not make an overt kicking motion towards the horse before, during or after a race.

22.23.05   Violation of any of the provisions in Rule 22.23.01 to 22.23.04 may result in any of the following penalties:

  1. Monetary penalty
  2. Suspension
  3. Placement
  4. Disqualification; and/or
  5. Any other penalty as ordered.

Further particulars in respect to the penalties are provided in Standardbred Policy Directive 5 - 2009 No. 3 - 2019, which also provides principles which serve as a guide for interpretation. The Directive may be modified from time to time by the Registrar and such modifications are not subject to appeal.

22.27.01   When a horse breaks from its gait in a race the driver shall:

  1. Take the horse to the inside or outside of other horses where clearance exists;
  2. Properly attempt to pull the horse to its gait; and
  3. Continuously loses ground while on the break.

If there has been no violation of (a), (b) or (c) above, the horse shall not be set back unless a contending horse on its gait is lapped on the hind quarter of the breaking horse at the finish, however, notwithstanding the foregoing, if interference caused by another driver(s) or horse(s) has caused the horse to be on a break at the finish, the Judges may, in their discretion, determine not to set the horse back even if a contending horse on its gait is lapped on the hind quarter of the breaking horse at the finish. The Judges may set any horse back one or more places if, in their judgment, any of the above violations have been committed, and the driver may be subject to a monetary penalty or suspension or both.

22.27.02   If a horse is not on its proper gait, in a race, for 25 consecutive strides or more (extended break) after the horse’s nose has crossed the start line, that horse shall be placed last.  However, the Judges may, in their discretion, determine not to set the horse back if interference caused by another driver(s) or horse(s) has caused the horse to be on a break for 25 consecutive strides or more.

22.29   It shall be the duty of one of the Judges to call out every break made and have them ensure that all breaks are duly recorded in Judges’ official race reports.

22.31.02   Notwithstanding that a horse is declared a non-contestant, and/or if a horse is scratched in error and cannot be added back into the pari-mutuel system, the Judges may permit the horse to participate in the race for purse distribution only. The Judges shall ensure that the race announcer informs the public that the horse will be racing without pari-mutuel wagering.

22.32.03  All drivers in a race shall proceed with caution upon the activation of the warning lights, and will follow any instructions of the Judges.

22.33   If, in their opinion, the Judges are unable to properly judge the running or finish of a race they may declare the race to be “No Contest”. When a race has been declared “No Contest” by the Judges, all monies wagered on that race will be distributed in accordance with the provisions of the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations under the Criminal Code (Canada). No purse distribution is to be made to any of the horses that started in such race except as provided for in Rule 18.09 or with the approval of the Registrar. The line for the race will be charted by the charter to the best of his/her ability to indicate the performance of each horse in the race, however, such charted line shall not be used for the determination of preference dates or eligibility to any future race. In the event that the race that is declared “No Contest” is a claiming race the provisions of Chapter 15 of these rules are applicable, and notwithstanding a determination that the race is “No Contest”, title to the horse shall be deemed to have passed to the claimant if the claimed horse is behind the gate when the field is released at the starting point by the starter and the horse has reached the starting point.

22.34   It is the responsibility of the trainer that all horses racing in his/her custody have a negative Coggins Test Certificate. The certificate, properly identifying the horse, must have been issued by a laboratory approved by Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency, certifying that within the prior 2 years the horse has been tested negative for equine infectious anemia (EA.) (EIA). For racing purposes, proof of a negative Coggins’ Test may be one of the copies of the stamped and signed serum test reports presented to the race secretary before the horse starts. If at that time it is determined that a horse already declared to race does not have proof of a negative Coggins’ Test, the horse shall be permitted to contest the race and immediately thereafter the Judges shall place the horse on the Judges’ List. The horse shall not race thereafter until such time as proof of a negative Coggins’ Test is presented to a Standardbred Canada representative.

22.38.01  Approved TCO2 Laboratory

In any part of Rule 22.38, “approved TCO2 laboratory” means a laboratory approved by the Registrar under 22.38.02, on the recommendation of Racetracks of Canada, to conduct the testing of Standardbred horses in accordance with Rule 22.38.05

22.38.02    Laboratory Approval Process

The Registrar may approve a laboratory recommended by Racetracks of Canada under Rule 22.38.01 if:

  1. The Registrar is satisfied that the laboratory employs competent staff, and has the necessary facilities and technical capability to conduct the testing of Standardbred horses in accordance with Rule 22.38.05; and
  2. The laboratory conducts the testing of Standardbred horses in accordance with Rule 22.38.05; and
  3. The laboratory undertakes to permit the Registrar or any person designated by the Registrar such access to its facilities and records, at any reasonable time selected by the Registrar that will allow the Registrar to audit the laboratory operations for the purposes of determining its compliance with the requirements of Rule 22.38.02 (a) and (b).

The Registrar’s granting or refusal of approval is not subject to appeal.

22.38.03  Withdrawal of Approval

The Registrar may withdraw his or her approval under Rule 22.38.02 if the approved TCO2 laboratory, in the opinion of the Registrar, does not comply with the provisions of 22.38.02 or 22.38.05. The Registrar’s decision to withdraw or not withdraw his or her approval is not subject to appeal.

CHAPTER 23: PROTESTS

23.02   Protests must be made no later than 15 days 48 hours following the race in question and must contain at least one specific charge which, if true, would prevent the horse from competing in the race or from winning purse money. The Judges may require that protests be reduced to writing and sworn to or solemnly affirmed. If more than 15 days 48 hours have passed since the race was run, no adjustments shall be made to purses or placing or records in the races contested after that time other than for positive tests. Notwithstanding the above, the Registrar may review any allegation, at any time, that a horse was ineligible and take what action he or she deems appropriate against the owner, trainer, driver or race secretary who declared the horse or allowed the horse to be declared and to race.

CHAPTER 24: APPEALS

24.01   Subject to rule 3.01.03 and the Horse Racing Licence Act, 2015, a person aggrieved by a decision or ruling of the Judges, Registrar or delegated officials made pursuant to these Rules, may appeal the decision or ruling to the Horse Racing Appeal Panel (HRAP), unless otherwise specified in the Rules.

For greater certainty, where the Rules allow for an appeal of a decision or ruling, the following aggrieved persons may appeal a decision:

  1. In the case of a ruling or decision affecting purse distribution, eligibility or placing a:
    1. Driver
    2. Owner; or
    3. Trainer

    who is associated with a horse that is entered in the race referred to in the ruling or decision.

  2. In the case of a ruling or decision regarding a licensee’s conduct, only the licensee named in the ruling or decision.

CHAPTER 25: DRIVERS

25.01  A person shall not drive a horse in any race or performance against time, other than an exhibition race, without having first obtained a driver licence valid for the current year by meeting the standards as established by Standardbred Canada or the United States Trotting Association and being licensed by the Commission. The licences shall be presented to the Judges prior to participating for the first time at any race meeting. Valid categories of licences are:

      …

  1. P, a probationary licence valid for all meetings in accordance with the terms of the probation.

25.03   Drivers must report to the paddock judge at least one hour before post time of any race in which they are programmed to drive, unless excused by the Judges. When programmed to drive in any race that is part of the Daily Double races, drivers must be in the paddock at least one hour before post time of the race which comprises the first half of the Daily Double, unless excused by the Judges. Where advanced wagering takes place on any feature betting race, drivers programmed to drive in such races must make their presence known to the paddock judge prior to commencement of the advanced wagering.

25.04   Drivers must wear distinguishing colours, and shall not be permitted to drive in a race or other public performance unless, in the opinion of the Judges, they are well groomed and properly attired in clean driving outfits. During inclement weather conditions, drivers must wear rain suits made in their colours or made of a transparent material through which their colours can be distinguished. No person may use more than one design at any one time, unless approved by the Judges.

25.06   Once a driver reports to the paddock he/she shall not enter the public stands or the betting area until his driving duties for the day have been completed and upon completion of his driving duties he shall not enter the public stands until he has replaced his driving outfit with ordinary clothing, unless he/she has obtained permission of the Judges.

CHAPTER 34: CHARTER

34.01   An Association shall appoint at least one charter who shall be responsible for properly and accurately completing the official chart by doing the following:

  1. Accurately recording the following information on the chart, regardless of type of race, and providing the completed chart to the Judges for verification and approval and also checking with the Standardbred Canada field representative after he/she has had the opportunity to input the chart information to the data base for error checks within the chart, for each race and making corrections as required:
    1. For qualifying and schooling races, notation is to be made for individual horses subjected to urine or blood tests, using indicator ‘TE’ with the dollar odds;

CHAPTER 37: OUT OF COMPETITION PROGRAM

37.07  The Registrar may direct a laboratory to retain and preserve samples for future analysis. Any decision with respect to the Registrar’s direction is not subject to appeal.

37.08   The Registrar may, at his or her discretion fix a time period which is not subject to appeal, that the sample(s) will be stored for, and may order the destruction of stored samples as he or she sees fit.

 

Was this page useful?

Please help us improve the AGCO website by responding to this survey