Fort Erie racetrack is a thoroughbred racing facility in Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada. It’s one of Canada’s most prominent horseracing tracks and is the yearly host of the Prince of Wales Stakes, the second jewel in Canada’s equivalent to the Triple Crown. By virtue of this prestigious stakes race, most of Canada’s famous race horses have competed on this track. Currently, Fort Erie holds one continuous meet, with racing from May to early September.
Other famous stakes races hosted by the track include the Canada Day Stakes, Bison City Stakes, Rainbow Connection Stakes, and International Turf Cup Stakes.
Fort Erie racetrack is known for its beautiful infield, filled with flowers and scenic lakes. In fact, Fort Erie is sometimes referred to as the most picture-perfect race track in the world due to the infield. One of the best known stories about the track involves a horse named Puss-n-Boots who took a plunge at the picturesque lake as he was leading a race back in 1961.
|One mile, sandy loam soil.|
Distance from last turn to finish: 1,060'
Width of track: 75'
|Seven furlongs, inside main course.|
Distance from last turn to finish: 930'
- On November 21, 1896, the ground breaking ceremony for Fort Erie racetrack was held. It was presided over by John Hood, president of the Fort Erie Jockey Club.
- On June 16, 1897, Fort Erie opened its doors to the world and the inaugural races were held. The first winner at the race track was Ellesmere who received $300 in prize money.
- On June 27, 1952, the Ontario Jockey Club purchased the track and took over the operations.
- In 1953, the track was refurbished at a cost of $3.5 million. A clubhouse and infield lakes were built and parking lots were expanded.
- In 1959, the first Prince of Wales Stakes was held.
- In 1979, a computerized betting system was installed.
- On September 11, 1982, inter-track wagering from Woodbine race track in Toronto began.
- On September 11, 1999, a 75,000 square foot casino slot area featuring 1,200 slot machines, was opened. A new TV Control room with graphic and electronic photo-finish capabilities was also installed.