Tag Archives: david armstrong

RCA welcomes government announcement but ‘certain restrictions’ may remain

The Racecourse Association (RCA) has released a statement welcoming the government’s announcement of the planned relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions on 19 July, emphasising the ‘difficult time’ the pandemic has posed for the industry. Under the government’s plans, a range of COVID-19 safety and social distancing measures will end on 19 July ‘in one go’, although authorities will retain the ‘ability …

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Galway racecourse eyes 5,000 capacity but admits ‘there’s a long way to go’

Ballybrit Race Track is reportedly developing plans to increase its capacity to 5,000 spectators for the upcoming Galway Races festival, according to the Racing Post. Irish racing has already seen 1,000 spectators attend the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby at Curragh racecourse with the fixture functioning as a pilot test event, following a similar strategy to the UK government’s four-stage …

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HBLB announces plans for distribution of £21.5 million SWSP loan

The Horse Betting Levy Board (HBLB) has agreed to terms on a £21.5 million loan secured from the British government as part of the Sport Winter Survival Package (SWSP). The loan has been issued as UK racing has suffered severe financial consequences as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, having lost around £400 million in racecourse revenue, whilst participants experienced …

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Racing attendance raised in parliament as industry calls for greater reopening

The issue of spectator attendance at British racetracks has been raised in parliament, as calls for an increase in venue capacity from leading industry figures and organisations continue to mount. Raised during a debate regarding the Events Research Programme, MPs discussed the success of pilot events in helping inform decisions about the safe relaxation of social distancing measures. Questioning sports …

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Racing to ‘continue to press hard’ for 10,000 racecourse capacity

UK horse racing industry leaders have confirmed that the sector’s representatives will ‘continue to press hard’ to receive the 10,000 capacity limit enjoyed by seated stadiums, as the government pushes ‘Freedom Day’ back until 19 July. The delay in the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions was announced yesterday by Prime Minister Boris Johnson – having originally been scheduled for 21 June …

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RCA: Reopening of racecourses a ‘huge milestone’

England’s racecourses are preparing to reopen their doors to spectators next week, an event described as a ‘huge milestone’ by the Racecourse Association (RCA). Up to 4,000 racing fans will be able to reenter the racecourses as of 17 May,  under the government’s official roadmap for the easing of the UK’s national lockdown. Further lifting of restrictions will take place …

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RCA in talks with government over Royal Ascot spectators

The Racecourse Association (RCA) remains in talks with the UK government’s Events Research Programme (ERP) regarding the return of spectators for the Royal Ascot meeting between 15 and 19 June. As reported by the Racing Post, David Armstrong, Chief Executive of the RCA, confirmed that the organisation is still in discussions with the government ahead of the easing of national …

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UK Racing pushes for drastic levy reforms as deep recession looms

The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has announced that it has agreed the ‘next phase of recovery’ for UK racing, working with The Horsemen’s Group and Racecourse Association (RCA). Since racing’s resumption on 1 July, the three bodies have collaborated on a wide range of recovery directives, seeking to restore racing activities and revenues for all stakeholders.  Publishing its joint plans, …

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