RCA: opening of racetracks marks a major milestone

England racecourses preparing to reopen their doors to spectators next week, racetrack called the event "a huge milestone." Association (RCA).

Up to 4,000 racing fans will be able to re-enter the racetracks starting May 17, according to government official roadmap to ease the national isolation of Great Britain.

Further lifting of restrictions will occur on June 21 as part of the fourth phase of the plan, although RCA has confirmed what is being discussed with the authorities regarding the return of spectators to the Royal Ascot event between 15 and 19 June.

In addition, the relaxation of the restrictions will also result in the sport returning to a "more traditional" racetrack experience as owners can again meet coaches and jockeys and watch their horses before and after the races as the race protocols are updated to reflect the changes. in the blocking rules.

“This next step on the government roadmap is a huge milestone in the recovery of British Racing,” said David Armstrong , Chief Executive Officer of RCA.

“Racecourses are very pleased to welcome the return of riders and be able to offer them a complete racing experience while expanding our owner experience.

“The blocking started almost 14 months ago and it was a very difficult path for the industry and in particular for the racetracks due to several false starts and interrupted pilot competitions. Let the 17th be a key step towards getting back to normal. "

Charlie Liverton , Executive Director Racehorse Owners' Associations (ROA), added: “The owners have been critical in keeping the horse racing behind closed doors over the past 12 months, contributing over £ 30 million a month in tuition fees alone.

“Even though invoices continued, the ability to race and race on race day was significantly hampered as the country and industry as a whole coped with the pandemic as a whole. Therefore, this is a long-awaited step: in May 17, owners can become one step closer to the action, returning to the parade ring "

Initially, the changes to the rules of the racetrack will only be made in England, as the racing industry seeks approval from the Scottish and Wales authorities for the opening of the grounds.

The ability of various racecourses to implement measures in accordance with current official government directives will be determined by their size and layout, with some requiring a more phased approach, while social distancing will continue to apply.

Under current proposals, a 'Green Zone' will be established, confined to key indoor work areas such as the weighing room, where infection control measures such as social distancing, face masking and entrance screening will be applied, although face masks will not be mandatory on others. sections of the course.

Due to the mixing of personnel from different areas and the risk of close contact in the front ring, the number of people who are allowed to enter the front step

Richard Wayman , Chief operating officer British Equestrian Authority (BHA) commented, “This is great. This suggests that we can finally welcome riders back to our racetracks. This will allow many racing fans to return to their favorite sport after more than a year.

“We know there is a huge public demand for families and friends to meet outdoors, enjoy delicious food and drinks, and a unique social occasion - the rally run. In addition, from next week, races may again offer our owners the opportunity to feel much closer to the action at the racetrack, returning to the parade ring.

“Race executives greatly appreciate the commitment and patience shown by the owners over the past year, as their attendance and experience at racetracks has been constrained by the pandemic.”

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