coronavirus and horse racing

Owners To Return In England And Scotland From Mar. 29

As much of the UK prepares for stage one of Boris Johnson's 'roadmap' out of the third coronavirus lockdown, the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has announced its plans for owners in England and Scotland to be allowed to return to the racecourse from Monday, March 29. The latest national lockdown came into force on Jan. 4 following severe restrictions for most of the country over the Christmas period. While elite sport was allowed to continue, racing has again operated behind closed doors with only essential personnel present on the racecourse. ...

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Medaglia d'Oro Firster Rockets Home to 'TDN Rising Star' Honors

Off at debut odds of 39-5 in a loaded seven-furlong Gulfstream maiden Saturday afternoon, Godolphin's Prevalence (Medaglia d'Oro) turned in arguably the performance of the meet, streaking away to graduate by 8 1/2 eased-down lengths. Drawn six in a field of 11, the bay colt was away without incident and showed enough speed to gain the rail for Tyler Gaffalione, as Triple Crown winner Justify's half-brother Stage Raider (Pioneerof the Nile) also attended the pace from the three path. Prevalence eased to the front with a half-mile to travel, but...

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Racing Review of the Year: Part I

The Classic Generation At the start of June, with France and Germany having already crept cautiously back into play after the COVID full-stop, Britain joined in with the beginning of a flourish of catch-up fare. In under a week of racing, we had a new star to gaze at, and time experts were in awe of Bjorn Nielsen's English King (Fr) (Camelot {GB}). While he looked super-slick in the Listed Lingfield Derby Trial, he was to be given the justifiably dreaded number one draw at Epsom and gave up any...

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Saratoga Regulars Bring the Spa to their Backyard

"And they're off at Saratoga!" Five words that hundreds, if not thousands, of people live to hear every July as the ceremonial phrase marks the beginning of another historic Saratoga Race Meet. While most normal attendees were unable hear those Tom Durkin-inspired words in person this year, some did their best to make the most of the situation. The enthusiasm from Mark Struffolino might be the example racing fans can look to emulate. Born and raised in upstate New York, the Rotterdam resident grew up spending summers at the Spa,...

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A Most Unusual Saratoga Meet Set to Begin Thursday

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Even though he is healthy and enthusiastic, 91-year-old Gus Ziamandanis will not be able to attend his 70th consecutive opening day at Saratoga Race Course on Thursday, July 16. His quest for a remarkable personal milestone was stopped by New York State's coronavirus guidelines that prohibit spectators at professional sporting events. When he understood that it was unlikely that he would get into the grounds for the 10-race opener, Ziamandanis made a reservation for a table at Capital OTB's Clubhouse Race Book in Albany, 33 miles...

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Leicester To Race On

Leicester Racecourse's planned fixture on July 7 will go ahead following consultation with relevant authorities after a COVID-19 spike prompted increased lockdown measures in the area earlier this week. The area lockdown has reinstated restrictions to what they were on June 14, at which point racing was permitted under strict guidelines. Owners will not be permitted at Leicester on July 7. The British Horseracing Authority has liaised with Racetech to ensure stalls handlers will be available for the fixture; Tuesday evening's meeting at Leicester was conducted without starting stalls. A...

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Weathering the Storm: Donald Little Jr.

While many questions regarding the Coronavirus pandemic remain unanswered, and with a stock market experiencing extreme volatility, there is continued uncertainty as to what could happen in our industry over the next few years. But many people in the industry have been through such ambiguity before. We sought the advice of industry leaders who successfully made their way through the Great Recession, and we asked what they learned from it and how they will use their experiences to advance through the coming years. DONALD LITTLE JR, Centennial Farms Our partnership...

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Weathering the Storm: Shannon Potter

While many questions regarding the Coronavirus pandemic remain unanswered, and with a stock market experiencing extreme volatility, there is continued uncertainty as to what could happen in our industry over the next few years. But many people in the industry have been through such ambiguity before. We sought the advice of industry leaders who successfully made their way through the Great Recession, and we asked what they learned from it and how they will use their experiences to advance through the coming years. SHANNON POTTER, Town and Country Farms Looking...

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Scottish Racing Back On June 22

Scottish racing is making plans to resume on June 22 behind closed doors with a meeting at Ayr. A provisional list of Scottish fixtures has been published through August, and discussions are taking place between Scottish Racing and the Scottish Government to support the fixtures as Scotland plans to exit lockdown. With racing still expected to begin again in England on June 1, the British Horseracing Authority has released further details on the screening processes for personnel planning to attend race meetings. As part of the declaration process, trainers and...

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Syndicates Riding Out COVID Storm

Those that invest in racehorse ownership are typically hooked by the thrill of competition and the camaraderie that comes along with the team effort it takes to get a horse into the winner's enclosure. So what happens when those key elements are removed? Those that stick around in the racing game would have to be resilient by nature or have developed thick skin along the way, and Sam Hoskins, a manager of syndicate groups Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds and Hot To Trot Racing, said, thankfully, his syndicate members have been game...

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Racing Off In Paris, 'Red Zones' of France

After eight days of racing behind closed doors since resuming on May 11, racing has once again been called off in France's 'red zone' areas--Ile-de-France, Hauts-de-France, Grand-Est and Bourgogne-Franche-Comte, which comprise Paris and its surrounding areas--with a government decree expected to be published in the coming days specifying that racing can continue in the country's 'green zones,' but not the red. The meetings affected over the next week are ParisLongchamp (Thursday and Sunday), Strasbourg (Thursday), Fontainebleau and Compiegne (Friday), Saint-Cloud (Monday) and Auteuil (Tuesday). Other courses in red zones include...

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NY Race Track Chaplaincy Campaign A Necessary Success

When the New York Racing Association announced Mar. 25 that racing would be suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic, perhaps no lives were affected as much as those of the New York backstretch workers. The New York Race Track Chaplaincy, which has been dedicated to supporting and ministering to the needs of this community for over 30 years, jumped into action. They began a campaign to help the 3,500 people who were suddenly without their normal wage deal with the challenges that resulted from the pandemic, asking for help in...

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