Plans for racing to be moved ‘behind closed doors’ this Summer.
Racing officials from The Jockey Club last week announced plans to stage the 2020 Investec Derby and Oaks behind closed doors amidst the Coronavirus pandemic.
Conservators of Epsom and Walton Downs have considered the proposal made by The Jockey Club to reschedule the races that were originally planned to take place in June, and move them to a Saturday date in either July or August this year, offering restricted access for participants to certain areas for 24 hours in order to allow the event to go ahead. These plans are set to involve a seven-race fixture taking place without a crowd present.
Several safety precautions would need to be set into place in order to allow this event to be carried out safely, including a closure of the public footpaths and bridleways that surround the Downs Racecourse.
The Investec Oaks was originally scheduled in the racing calendar for 5th June, with the Derby following on the 6th. The provisional rescheduled event date proposed by The Jockey Club has been set as 4th July, subject to the Government’s approval of the commencement of racing and other such events.
Group Chief Executive of The Jockey Club, Delia Bushell, said: “We have worked hard on a practical and deliverable plan to stage the 2020 Investec Derby and Investec Oaks at their traditional home, without a crowd and once racing is approved to resume by the Government. Our teams now look forward to working with the British Horseracing Authority and local authorities to bring our plan to life.”
As “the most famous Flat race in the world”, the Epsom Derby is Britain’s richest horse race. Inaugurated in 1780, it is the most prestigious of the five Classics and regularly attracts large crowds, including famous faces. Last year’s event saw approximately 150,000 people attend, including Her Majesty the Queen.
Visit The Jockey Club website to stay informed on the latest updates.
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