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BHA expects to decide on Friday whether Leicester can race next week

Wed 1 Jul 2020

A decision on whether next week’s fixture at Leicester will take place is expected to be made by the British Horseracing Authority on Friday.

Due to a spike in Covid-19 cases in the area, Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced on Monday evening that all non-essential businesses in and around Leicester would have to close again, with schools following suit from Thursday.

Racing at Leicester on Tuesday evening went ahead following morning consultation between local health authorities and the BHA – although some trainers were unhappy at the card taking place, and races had to be started without stalls because of an inadequate number of stalls handlers.

The BHA will have further discussions with the relevant authorities before a final decision on next Tuesday’s scheduled card is made, and that decision is expected by lunchtime on Friday.

The BHA will also speak to representative bodies within the industry regarding the issues arising from local lockdowns, and the impact they may have in future on racing

A BHA spokesperson said: “Yesterday’s race meeting was held with the approval of the local authority and Public Health England under the strict protocols agreed in advance of the resumption of sport behind closed doors.

“The lockdown effectively reinstated restrictions as they were on June 14, in the view of local officials, when racing was permitted in accordance with UK government guidelines.

“Given that the local lockdown measures may still be evolving, it’s important that dialogue continues ahead of any future events in Leicester.

“Our industry colleagues will be briefed on this dialogue and will consider any potential impacts on racing. Our focus continues to be on making sure racing behind closed doors takes place as safely as possible.”

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