Information Bulletin: Standardbred Rule Revisions (Winter 2021)

Information Bulletin
Horse Racing

March 5, 2021

As outlined in the Announcement: Revisions to Thoroughbred & Standardbred Rules of Racing, the AGCO will make a broad set of rule changes to the Standardbred Rules of Racing, effective April 6, 2021.

To see the complete set of rule revisions, including additions and deletions, please go to Standardbred Winter 2021 Rule Revisions.

Please note that while the information in this bulletin provides a summary for your convenience, it remains the responsibility of all licensees to read and follow the up-to-date Rules as published online.

Registrar’s Authority and the Right of Appeal

The AGCO is updating and clarifying which aggrieved persons can appeal, and what can be appealed to the Horse Racing Appeal Panel (HRAP), to align the Rules with the Horse Racing Licence Act, 2015 (HRLA).

Specifically, the changes clarify that:

Note that the majority of rulings that are currently appealed, relating to in-race violations, conduct and positive tests, will continue to be appealable to HRAP.

Racetrack Association Obligations

Chapter 7: Racing Associations will be revised in its entirety and should be reviewed closely by Association staff and other impacted licensees. Some key changes are intended to:

Other Key Operational Changes

The AGCO would like to acknowledge the work by Standardbred Canada and other Canadian racing jurisdictions to streamline rules across the country with the aim of making rules more consistent when moving between Canadian jurisdictions. Several changes outlined below are the result of that work.

Qualifying Races

 Claiming Races

Racing Rules

Driving Rules

General Language and Other Clean-up

As part of its ongoing effort to modernize and streamline the Rules of Racing, the AGCO is updating the language throughout the Rules to reflect current practice and terminology, and this rule change announcement includes several such instances.

Helpful Resources

For More Information

  • Refer to the Race Day Contact List to connect with AGCO racing staff at an open racetrack about the changes in this announcement
  • Contact AGCO anytime via the iAGCO online portal
  • Call AGCO Customer Service Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (ET) at 416-326-8700 or toll free in Ontario at 1-800-522-2876