From an imposing organization enjoying some of its best years of horse racing in its history to the headlines yesterday that the company is reeling from several events including the impending end on March 31 of the slots-at-racetracks program.
This is a horrible situation for the Ontario thoroughbred industry, almost as bad as when the end of SAR was announced a year ago and the bottom fell out of our breeding industry. The breeders have felt it bad, now the 2,300 people who have been working at Woodbine are feeling it.
109 are no longer with the company, a list that includes longtime media and sponsorship manager GLENN CROUTER, media office worker ASHLEY MAYOTTE, a litany of TV department people including RENEE KIERANS, DAVE FREY, VP’S such as ANDREW MACDONALD and BRUCE MURRAY and the very popular JANETT MULLEN.
Another crucial move is the cancellation of the popular show BET NIGHT LIVE, which was on a couple of times a week for TB and standardbred racing, bringing in people from all over to learn about the game and watch JIM BANNON, SANDY HAWLEY, JASON PORTUONDO AND LAURA DYKEN discuss racing and betting.
So far, the layoffs, retirements have been coming in dribs and drabs and it is not certain if there are any more to come.