Racing Victoria (RV) has announced that Victorian thoroughbred racing will continue to be spectator-free until at least Sunday night, 6 June 2021.
The decision has been made in consultation with the clubs racing this weekend to provide certainty in their planning and preparations.
The State Government has today announced that the current circuit breaker restrictions will continue in Greater Melbourne until at least 11.59pm on Thursday, 10 June 2021.
They also announced an easing of restrictions in regional Victoria from Friday, 4 June 2021 that will allow for the possibility of the resumption of limited spectators.
Acting in both an abundance of caution and to allow further time for consideration and planning, RV has today announced that the following industry biosecurity protocols will remain in place across Victoria until at least 11.59pm (AET) on Sunday, 6 June 2021:
- Race meetings will proceed with only competing participants, essential staff and officials permitted to attend;
- All spectators (including owners, members and the general public), non-broadcast media and non-essential staff are prohibited from attending Victorian race meetings;
- All owners, media and non-essential persons are prohibited from attending Victorian public and private training facilities and licensed racing premises at any time; and
- Face masks are compulsory at all Victorian race meetings, training centres and licensed premises at all times. Riders are permitted to remove their mask only when on horseback and when they have exited the mounting yard on raceday.
A further update on whether a limited number of regional spectators, with owners being an initial priority, will be able to attend regional race meetings from Monday, 7 June 2021 will be provided over coming days.
RV Chief Executive, Giles Thompson said, “The Government announcement means that spectators are not permitted at tracks in Greater Melbourne for at least the next seven days which includes Pakenham this Friday and Flemington on Saturday.
“We’ve made a proactive decision regarding our regional race meetings this weekend given any resumption of spectators will be restricted and require updated protocols and significant planning from both the industry and host clubs to facilitate it.
“We’ll be continuing discussions with the Government, health advisors, Country Racing Victoria and our clubs over the coming days to determine the appropriate protocols for racing and training in regional Victoria from Monday onwards.
“We are also mindful of the significant number of exposure sites in Victoria and the risk that the current COVID outbreak may pose to industry participants and the safe continuation of racing and training.
“As we have done throughout the pandemic, we will continue to make decisions to protect the health and wellbeing of industry staff and participants; to maintain 25,000 full-time equivalent jobs across the state; and to ensure essential daily care and exercise can be afforded to our horses.”