USA – A horse racing track owner in Minnesota; Canterbury Park Holding Corporation, has today announced that it has laid over eight-hundred staff off due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in an attempt to mitigate ‘the financial impact resulting from the suspension of operations at Canterbury Park’.
Around two weeks ago, the horse racing track shut its doors to the public and currently has no meaningful avenue to generate revenue at this time.
Chief executive officer of the firm Randy Sampson commented on the announcement:
“Since suspending all operations at Canterbury Park on March 16, 2020, we have acted aggressively to preserve cash by reducing our operating expenses, suspending or delaying our 2020 planned capital expenditures, and suspending our quarterly cash dividend.”
Sampson elaborated on the necessary measures to secure the company’s future and how it is following guidance from state officials as to when the establishment can re-open:
“The additional actions we are implementing today are the hardest we have ever had to make given the impact on our dedicated employees for whom this situation is beyond our collective control. While this was an extremely difficult decision to make, the Board of Directors and I remain committed to taking the necessary actions that help ensure our employees’ health and safety as well as the Company’s long-term future. We continue to work closely with Governor Walz, the Minnesota Department of Health and other government entities, and will seek their guidance on when Canterbury Park can reopen so that our team members’ way of life can get back to normal. We look forward to seeing our dedicated team members return to Canterbury Park once we reopen.”
Canterbury Park usually runs a meet that consists of about 70 racing days from early May to mid-September, generally holding scheduled races Thursday through Sunday, with racing added on several holidays throughout the meet.
Although the initial suspension of services was voluntary, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz issued ‘Emergency Executive Order 20-04 and subsequently Emergency Executive Order 20-18 causing the closure of bars, restaurants and other public accommodations including Canterbury Park until May 1, 2020 at 5:00 p.m’.