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A Day At The Races – Lockdown Edition

To say the last year has been tough on us all is an understatement. Most of the world has struggled, but hopefully the end of lockdowns and restrictions is in sight, and we can get back to some sort of normality.

One sector that has suffered badly, is the Horse Racing industry.

Many think that Horse Racing is a sport for the rich, stuffed with money from billionaire owners, however that is far from the truth.

Most owners are in fact, everyday people. The increase of syndicates have seen more and more normal people like myself become involved in ownership of racehorses. People who have struggled to make ends meet during the tough times of COVID. This has seen many owners pull out of the sport, leaving trainers and staff also struggling.

Now let’s not forget the racecourses. No crowds = no income. No crowds = no bookmakers. The list goes on.

The domino effect goes on and on. It’s clear for all to see, that the racing industry has suffered.

But with restrictions slowly, but surely easing, racecourses are allowing more and more in.

Today, Wednesday 14th April, I head to Newmarket Racecourse as an owner, to experience a day at the races during COVID.

Safety First

During the past 12 months, I’ve been to around 5 or 6 different racecourses, and the safety has been second to none.

As we enter the historic Newmarket, instantly you are greeted with the 3 COVID questions.

After you answer the questions, get your temperature checked, and get inside, you’re greeting with history instantly.

This is my first time to Newmarket, and it’s a spectacle.

The home of flat racing. Newmarket is home to numerous trainers and jockeys. As you enter both the town and the racecourses, you have gallops galore. Studs, Horses everywhere. It really has to be seen to be believed.

The great Eclipse is remembered here at Newmarket.

The facilities are top notch. I’ve been to a few racecourses lately and been unable to even stand inside for a few minutes.

Here at Newmarket, you have a lounge/bar area where you can peacefully sit and get a drink, while watching the racing out the windows, and on the TV.

There is also an excellent restaurant just for owners below, where you can enjoy a warm meal on cold days like today!

The Racing

The flat season is back!

The home of flat racing, has some outstanding racing straight from the start, with 2 group 3’s and a listed contest the highlights.

Frankie Dettori is back riding in the U.K. after the winter break.

Frankie Dettori, Oisin Murphy, Ryan Moore and many more are all back after stints abroad and in isolation on their return. Thady Gosden has joined father John in the newest father-son combination, and have a strong hand of both new and old recruits to attack the big contests with.

We were here however, to watch Concierge in the 2nd race at 13.55. Another strong horse from Michael Attwater owned by Dare To Dream, he ran in a hot enough class 2 race.

The ground wasn’t in his favour, yet he plugged on and ran a real game race under Andrea Atzeni to get 3rd!

See the video of the finish below.

After the excitement of Concierge’s run, it was time to get a well deserved bite to eat!

Once again, Newmarket didn’t disappoint.

The food was superb.

Numerous options were available, to suit all tastebuds. I however went for the Chicken and Ham, with rice, and I’m glad I did. Top notch!

All in all, an excellent run, and a great day at Newmarket. Hospitality was excellent and facilities second to none.

A massive mention to all the staff at Newmarket. From start to finish they made you feel like royalty. Very helpful, and couldn’t do enough for you.

I can’t wait to return here in the very, very near future!

Thank you Newmarket.

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