07/18/2013 14:05 EDT | Updated 09/17/2013 05:12 EDT

Horse flu outbreak cancels Hastings horse races

A flu-like virus is forcing Vancouver's Hastings Racecourse to cancel this Saturday's horse races.

The virus recently spread through the barn area and has affected "a substantial number of horses," the racecourse said in a release today.

"Horses affected are experiencing similar affects that people do when hit with the flu and thus racing and strenuous activities are out for those equine affected," the release said.

Races scheduled for 7 p.m. PT Friday and 1:50 p.m. Sunday will proceed as scheduled.