7 key races to watch as Ontario votes

Polls in Ontario's heated provincial election close today at 9 p.m. ET. Here's a look at some of the more interesting races to watch when the results start rolling in.

4 Liberals, 2 PCs and 1 NDP take the seats

Here are some of the more interesting races to follow in Ontario Votes 2011.

Former Liberal Rocco Rossi, left, was recruited by PC Leader Tim Hudak in February. (Canadian Press)

Eglinton-Lawrence:  Rocco Rossi (PC) was defeated by Mike Colle (Liberal). Talk about a grudge match. Rossi, whose bid for the Toronto mayoralty failed last fall, is a former national director of the Liberal Party. This charismatic star candidate has now turned Tory blue and many Liberals in the riding tell CBC News they're keen to defeat him in this race. Colle, a former Toronto city councillor, was first elected to Queen's Park in 1995. This riding was once considered a Liberal safe seat but the Conservatives captured it in the spring federal election. This one could go down to the wire.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is hoping that Jagmeet Singh can win in Bramalea-Gore-Malton. (Canadian Press)

Bramalea-Gore-Malton: Jagmeet Singh (NDP) defeated incumbent Kuldip Kular (Liberal).  Most of the ridings in the so-called 905 region surrounding Toronto are Liberal vs. PC affairs. Not here. The NDP recruited Singh after he lost his bid for a federal seat in May by only 539 votes. Singh is a young lawyer, speaks three languages and is running an impressive youth-driven campaign. Opposing him is Kular, a doctor and popular candidate first elected in 2003.

Vaughan: Greg Sorbara (Liberal) was re-elected versus Tony Genco (PC).  Another grudge match. Longtime Liberal cabinet minister Sorbara will try to hold off a challenge from Genco, who ran as a Liberal and lost against Tory Julian Fantino in last fall's byelection before turning to the Tories. Adding to the intrigue: Genco formerly worked as an assistant to Sorbara.

Don Valley West:  Kathleen Wynne (Liberal) was re-elected versus Andrea Mandel-Campbell (PC). Wynne is sometimes mentioned as a possible successor to McGuinty. She is facing a strong challenge from PC candidate and former Business News Network anchor Andrea Mandel-Campbell, a first-time candidate. Wynne, who has held cabinet portfolios of transportation and education, won’t be easy to topple. In 2007, she beat then opposition leader John Tory.

Ottawa West-Nepean: Randall Denley (PC) was defeated by Bob Chiarelli  (Liberal). High-profile candidate Denley is an Ottawa Citizen columnist aiming to unseat Chiarelli, who returned to provincial politics in a byelection last year. Chiarelli, a former Ottawa mayor who first served as an MPP from 1987 to 1997, was infrastructure minister in McGuinty's cabinet. Things turned testy between Denley and Chiarelli during an all-candidates meeting and Ottawa journalists are calling this one a dogfight.

Prince Edward-Hastings: Leona Dombrowsky (Liberal) was defeated by Todd Smith (PC). Dombrowsky has been an MPP since 1999 and has held a handful of cabinet positions, including education. But seeking her seat is Todd Smith a news director and radio personality in Belleville.

Peterborough: Jeff Leal (Liberal) was re-elected versus Alan Wilson (PC).  Peterborough has a history of being a bellwether riding as the people of Peterborough have elected the candidate from the winning party in every provincial election since 1977. The PCs are challenging the incumbent Leal with former Quaker Oats executive Alan Wilson.