Daily Express


- By Melissa Jones Horse Racing · Sports · Boris Johnson · Cheltenham · Jockey Club · United Kingdom · Newmarket · Laos · Cambridgeshire · Jockey International · The Jockey Club

RAC­ING chiefs yes­ter­day warned of in­dus­try- wide reper­cus­sions from the de­ci­sion to stop fans at­tend­ing live sport events.

Race­courses were al­ready fac­ing a loss of up to £ 300mil­lion in rev­enue this year, be­fore Prime Min­is­ter Boris John­son, right, claimed new re­stric­tions could re­main in place for up to six months.

This could also mean that the

Chel­tenham Fes­ti­val in March may have to be staged be­hind closed doors.

The BHA de­scribed the de­lay, along­side fresh Covid- 19 rules for the na­tion, as a “se­ri­ous blow,’ af­ter sev­eral suc­cess­ful pi­lot fix­tures were staged.

“De­spite all those ef­forts, our in­dus­try is now fac­ing a se­vere threat,” said a BHA spokesper­son. “We are the sec­ond most at­tended spec­ta­tor sport in the coun­try. y

“With­out the mil­lions of peo­ple who nor­mally en­joy y a day at the races, many peo­ple’s jobs are at se­ri­ous risk.”

Nevin Trues­dale, group Chief Ex­ec­u­tive of The Jockey Club, called on the e gov­ern­ment to pro­vide fi­nan­cial sup­port for horse rac­ing. He said in a usual year the sport would con­trib­ute more than £ 4bil­lion to the U UK econ­omy. New­mar­ket be­came the la lat­est ca­su­alty of Covid- 19 re­stric­tions, af­ter they were forced to p pull the plug on hav­ing ra race­go­ers at its three- day Camb Cam­bridgeshir­e meet­ing later this week.

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