Racing Victoria (RV) wishes to remind owners of the current circumstances regarding raceday attendance and stable visits.
A capped number of spectators are permitted to attend Victorian race meetings subject to application by the host Club and approval by the State Government.
The number of spectators permitted to attend may differ from one race meeting to another based on Government approvals, infrastructure and/or facilities.
It is important to note that some Clubs may not be in a position to welcome spectators to their race meetings due to the necessary biosecurity protocols
RV again thanks all owners for their cooperation and understanding through these unprecedented times. Your participation in Victorian racing is greatly valued by all.
Who can attend race meetings?
Once approved to host a capped number of spectators, it is ultimately up to the host Club how they split up their spectator allocation among owners, members, corporate partners and the public.
In doing so, Clubs have been requested to ensure that a minimum number of owners with runners engaged are permitted to, at the very least, attend for the period in which their horse is racing.
To that end, some Clubs may place a cap on the time owners can spend on course, while others will allow owners to remain for the entirety of the race meeting. Either way, pre-registration is compulsory should you wish to attend a race meeting.
Given the circumstances may differ slightly from one meeting to another, RV encourages you to refer to the website of the Club where your horse has been nominated or accepted to race.
The Club website will detail what attendance is permitted at this meeting, the protocols in place and importantly the process for owners with a runner engaged to pre-register. It will also include details around hospitality packages should you wish to make a booking.
Your acceptance email on the day fields are finalised will also include a link to the relevant information on the host Club’s website.
What if I have been interstate or spent time in a COVID hotspot?
If you have been interstate or spent time in a COVID hotspot in the last 14 days, or been in Close Contact with someone who has, you may not be able to attend any licensed premises, such as your trainer’s stables, for a defined period of time and/or until you have obtained a negative test result. What you are required to do will depend on where you have been, including whether you have been in a green, orange or red zone, or been in Close Contact with someone from a red zone, and is set out below.
- What are the Victorian Government requirements regarding interstate travel?
Effective 17:59 on 11 January 2021, the Victorian Government requires you to apply for a permit to enter Victoria from anywhere in Australia, unless an exception (for example, resident of the NSW border community) or exemption applies (please refer to the Victorian DHHS website here for information regarding exceptions and exemptions).
A red zone means if a person has visited this area in the past 14 days that person will not be allowed to enter Victoria without an exception or exemption from the Victorian Government.
An orange zone means that a person will be able to apply for a permit from the Victorian Government and will need to take a coronavirus test within 72 hours after arriving in Victoria, isolating both before and after the test, until the person receives a negative result.
A green zone means that a person will be able to apply for a permit from the Victorian Government and enter Victoria and will need to monitor for symptoms and if that persons feels unwell with COVID symptoms, get tested.
A map illustrating the different zones is available here. You should monitor this website to ensure you are up-to-date on any changes to the relevant zones.
- What are Racing Victoria’s requirements regarding interstate travel?
You must comply with the Victorian Government’s requirements with respect to interstate travel, as summarised above, including any requirements to get tested and self-isolate on your return to Victoria. For details on the Victorian Government’s new permit system, please refer here.
In addition to Government requirements, Racing Victoria has also put additional protocols in place with respect to those who have had Close Contact (refer definition below) with someone who has spent time in a red zone in the last 14 days, and for those who have spent time in an orange zone in the last 14 days – these additional requirements are set out below.
You must not attend any racecourse or licensed premises unless and until you have complied with these requirements.
If you have had Close Contact with someone from a red zone
If you have been in Close Contact with someone from a red zone you are not permitted to attend any racecourse or licensed premises for a period of 14 days from the date you last had contact with that person, with the date you last had contact being day 0.
Close Contact means you have:
(a) had face to face contact in any setting for more than a total of 15 minutes over the course of a week; or
(b) shared a closed space for a prolonged period (for example, more than two hours).
If you have spent time in an orange zone
If you have spent time in an orange zone in the last 14 days you are not permitted to attend any racecourse or licensed premises for a period of 6 days from the date you entered Victoria, with the date you entered being day 0.
- What if I have spent time in a COVID Hotspot?
If you have attended or spent time in any COVID Hotspot (refer definition below) in the past 14 days – or you have been in Close Contact (refer definition above) in the past 14 days with someone who has attended or spent time in a COVID Hotspot – you are not permitted to attend any Victorian racecourse or licensed premises for a period of 14 days from the date you entered Victoria or the date you last had Close Contact with the relevant person, with the date you entered/last had Close Contact being day 0.
What is a COVID Hotspot?
COVID Hotspot means any location (including a particular local government area, region, city or venue) identified by Racing Victoria (having regard to Federal and State Government advice) from time to time as a “COVID hotspot” due to the existence of community transmission or active COVID-19 cases (or both) and includes any “red zone” as determined by the Victorian Government from time to time – please refer here for current zone information and monitor it regularly for changes.
Please monitor Racing Victoria media releases and refer to the Racing Victoria website here, as well as State and Federal Government websites (refer below), for the most up to date information regarding hotspots:
- Victorian DHHS website, in particular, the Victorian Case Locations and Outbreaks page, available by clicking here;
- NSW Government website;
- SA Government website;
- Tasmanian Government website;
- Queensland Government website;
- Northern Territory Government website;
- Western Australia Government website.
Race Clubs may impose additional requirements on you with respect to raceday attendance at their venues – please make sure you refer to the website of the relevant Club to make sure you meet any requirements imposed by them in relation to COVID-19, including pre-registration.
As always, please make sure that you monitor for symptoms of COVID-19. If you are unwell or experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, please do not attend any racecourse or licensed premises until you are feeling better and have obtained a negative test result.
What will the raceday experience be like?
Whilst spectator attendance is once again permitted, the raceday experience has not yet returned to normal.
The State Government’s Public Events Framework currently permits spectators to attend on the basis that they have an allocated seat or outdoor location (i.e. picnic area) and are not free roaming.
The Government has not yet provided a definitive date as to when this requirement will be removed, but RV are in active discussions with Government so that the Clubs can safely deliver an enhanced raceday experience for all attendees.
Further updates will also be provided by Racing Victoria and host Clubs in the weeks ahead on the segregation of the racecourse and opportunities for owners to access additional areas.
Are stable visits now allowed?
As previously communicated prior to Christmas, owners are permitted to once again attend public and private training centres for the primary purpose of visiting your horse provided your attendance is not during trackwork and that you only attend the stables of your licensed trainer.
When visiting a stable, you are required to wear a mask at all times when inside any barns or dwellings and when you are unable to socially distance outside, and to sanitise or wash your hands on entry and exit and as otherwise necessary during your visit (e.g. when taking your mask on or off).
Your trainer has been asked to keep a log of all attendance if needed at any point for contact tracing.
In addition, you are now also permitted to attend jump-outs and official trials at which you have a horse engaged.
The host Club will provide a designated area for owners to watch their horse compete, which is likely to be in areas traditionally used for raceday viewing.
Please note that, at this time, owners are not permitted to attend public and private training centres during morning trackwork; to visit communal training locations (such as training towers) or access the infield at public training centres. As always, these requirements remain under ongoing review.
Once again, thank you for your ongoing understanding and cooperation during the COVID-19 pandemic and we wish you the best of luck on the racetrack.
Racing Victoria Owner Team