Horse Racing in Panama

  • Panama City in Panama will resume its horse racing activities at the end of September.
  • The horses are costing the Hipódromo Presidente Remón track over $700K a month to maintain.
  • Events at the track will prohibit fans from attending in the country’s continued effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

PANAMA CITYThe Hipódromo Presidente Remón, Panama City’s horse racing track will reopen with races beginning on September 28. Drawings for the national lottery will begin two weeks later on October 12.

The race track will not be allowing spectators to attend the events because of the Coronavirus Pandemic which is why the track was originally shut down to begin with, in March.

However, with races happening worldwide, Panama is one of the last countries to be restarting the activity.

Horse Racing In Panama

With the Updated National-Provincial Reopening Plan approved by the Cabinet Council of Panama, gambling events like that of horse racing and the lottery can begin with a certain amount of restrictions implemented to abide by health safety guidelines for COVID-19.

Horse racing will remain without fans in the stands until the number of beds available in hospitals remains at 20% or higher and the mortality rate from the Coronavirus scales down to less than 3%. Only then will the Presidency allow for public events to resume normally.

However, Monty Motta, the president of the Thoroughbred Racehorse Owners of Panama (Appucapa) is relieved at the approval that horse races have been given. He says that the Hipódromo Presidente Remón has put into place all the requirements needed to begin operations as stated within the Ministry of Health policies.

He also believes there is no problem for races to be held without people in the stands as the last few races of March before the shutdown took place in this manner. It in no way affected the gambling on the events which is the moneymaker that has been nonexistent for nearly six months.

The track is home to 1,200 horses that cost $20 a day per horse to maintain. Monthly that’s a figure of $720,000 a month spent on the horses. With no money coming in, that leaves the industry hemorrhaging quite a bit.

The return of races in Panama is something that is greatly needed, not just for the economy but to allow for the business to stay afloat.

Panamanians and even U.S. pari-mutuel betting enthusiasts can expect to lay down some wagers on the horses once again starting September 28. With any luck, by the end of the year, they will be able to once again attend the events in person.

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