INVERNESS (NS) – October 3, 2010 – A new stable and equipment facility was officially opened today at the Inverness Raceway thanks to an investment from the Government of Canada through Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation (ECBC).
“Our Government is committed to working with communities to better position them for economic growth,” said the Honourable Keith Ashfield, Minister of National Revenue, Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway. “The improvements to the Inverness Raceway enhance an important piece of community infrastructure, ensuring that the raceway will continue to contribute to the economic vitality of Inverness County.”
The new stable and equipment facility features 54 horse stalls, two tack rooms, grooming areas for horses and storage space for supplies. During the racing season, the stalls will be occupied by horses from across Atlantic Canada who race in Inverness. During the winter months the facility will be used to board local horses.
The total cost of the new facility is $943,822. The Government of Canada, through ECBC has contributed $408,620 toward the development.
The Inverness Raceway is the only harness racing facility in Inverness County. Opened in 1926, it has always operated as a not-for-profit enterprise. Since 1964, it has been managed by the Inverness Playground and Recreation Association with a mandate to promote and encourage the sport of harness racing, while providing a tourism attraction for visiting horse owners and the general public. Operating from May to the end of October, the track features 30 live races a season and simulcasts races from various well-known courses five nights a week. The half-mile track can accommodate 300 spectators in the stands and many more trackside.
“Inverness County has a long tradition of harness racing and many of the top trainers in Canada got their start at the Inverness Raceway,” said Russell Copley, President of the Inverness Playground and Recreation Association. “The financial support received from the Government of Canada has enabled us to build on an Inverness County tradition that attracts horse owners from across the Atlantic Provinces and racing fans from near and far.”
Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation offers programs in support of economic development initiatives and is responsible for delivering ACOA’s programs on Cape Breton Island and in the Mulgrave area.