RACING is looking to resume on Monday 1st June subject to Government approval and Harper Lodge Farm is gearing up for the much anticipated resumption.
The plan is for Newcastle to be the first track back and trainers up and down the country will be entering their horses at the six-day stage (on Tuesday) but for the foreseeable future, declarations will be made 72 hours beforehand. The reason for the extra day is to allow racecourses and trainers to deal with the necessary extra regulations and protocols to ensure racing resumes safely for all the participants involved.
There is a real buzz in the yard as stable lads and lasses cannot wait to get back racing, albeit in very unusual circumstances with no spectators. The staff know that they will have to observe social distancing on the racecourse as indeed they are doing at the yard and there will be more paperwork and bureaucracy involved in getting horses to the track and racing. However, the desire to go racing more than outweighs the extra requirements.
Royal Ascot is still on schedule for 16 – 20 June with a revised programme comprising additional races. There will be 36 races over the five days including an additional six races including a return to The Buckingham Palace Handicap which will open the meeting. The first four days will consist of seven races each while the concluding day, the Saturday, will host eight races including three Group Ones.
The stable will aim several of its big guns at the royal meeting including the likes of Stake Acclaim, Flaming Spear, Librisa Breeze and Tropics. The last of these, is as in love with the game as ever, judging by the way he came up the gallops yesterday, at the tender age of 12! The chestnut son of Speightstown (Natalie Byrne) is pictured here with Librisa Breeze (Emily Crossman), both horses showing how to social distance!