PUSLINCH, Ont. - Officials with Ontario's fire marshal's office continue looking into the cause of a barn fire that killed 43 racehorses.

Dozens of firefighters had to struggle with bitter cold as the battled the blaze that broke out late Monday night at Classy Lane Stables south of Guelph, Ontario.

Trainer Dan Lagace described the fire as a professional catastrophe and akin to losing members of a family.

Lagace says he rushed to the scene from his home in nearby Cambridge, but could only stand helplessly by as the building that contained both his livelihood and loved ones was engulfed in flames.

One horse that died in the fire was six-year-old pacer Apprentice Hanover.

He'd placed 10th in the North America Cup in 2013 and Jody Jamieson, who drove Apprentice Hanover for the majority of his races, says he's "absolutely devastated."

Jamieson says the horse didn't deserve to die that way, adding -- quote -- "none of them did."