Covid-19 Nhra protocols for horse racing behind closed doors


• All Staff are to wear face masks and sanitise hands at all times.
• All Staff on the provided horse transport to Races are to be temperature tested prior
to leaving the training Centre.
• A maximum of one attendant to be allocated per horse.
• All horse fittings (e.g. HEAD COLLAR AND LEAD) to be sanitised prior to leaving the Training Centre.
• Prior to and upon completion of each journey, the vehicle and horse float/truck should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected to minimise any risk of future spread of the virus on future journeys.
• As far as possible, Stable Staff to travel in isolation and ensure social distancing.


• Only ESSENTIAL STAFF MEMBERS (see below) will be permitted entrance through the SINGLE ENTRANCE ON THE RACE COURSE.
1. Licensed Jockeys/Apprentices engaged to ride at the race meeting
2. Licensed Trainers with engaged runners
3. Licensed Assistant Trainers/Stable Employees (recommended one per stable)
4. Grooms (one per horse)
5. Official Photographers/Technical Staff
6. Racing Operator Staff
7. Licensed Officials
8. A maximum of two Racing Journalists at the sole discretion of the Racing Operator.
• All entrants to the Race course to be temperature tested and hand sanitised before being permitted entry. Random temperature testing will also be conducted throughout the day.
• Any person with an underlying health condition (a co-morbidity linked to the Covid-19 virus) shall not be permitted to gain entrance to the race course.
• All entrants are to wear face masks and practice social distancing.
• Persons recording a temperature reading of 38 degrees or above, will be denied entry.
• Any person that records a temperature reading of 38 degrees or above, will be required to proceed to the medical isolation centre and will be examined by the on- course Medical Officer.
• A list of Staff members/support personnel should be kept by Security that will be verified before entrance is permitted. A record of all persons that enter the race course should be maintained.


• Signage outlining hygiene and social distancing measures should be displayed at all race courses.
• Upon arrival, all Staff members should proceed to their work stations and maintain safe social distancing of at least 1.5 metres, while wearing a face mask and regularly wash and sanitise their hands.
• Trainers/Assistant Trainers should proceed to their station and maintain safe social distancing of at least 1.5 metres while wearing a face mask and regularly wash and sanitise hands.
• When on course it is essential that participants do not gather or congregate in any areas, e.g. gathering around a TV to watch a race.
• A recommended maximum of two persons should be in a horse stall while saddling and tacking up. The Rider should assist with saddling wherever possible.
• Frequent hand sanitisation should be practiced by the person that assists a rider to mount his horse.
• Persons to ensure the 1.5 metre social distance between them and other participants.
• Official Handler bibs will not be used.
• Trainers to ensure that their Staff members are supplied with clothing which needs to be thoroughly laundered after every race meeting.
• Participants are encouraged to bring their own pre-packed food and beverages which are not to be shared.
• All participants should be equipped with face masks and be well spread out at all times.
• Frequent washing and sanitising of hands should be practiced.
• The same set of silks will not be permitted to be used more than once at the same race meeting. All silks to be thoroughly washed after every use.
• All Officials are to practice the 1.5 metre social distance guideline and to wear face masks.
• Hand sanitiser is to be freely available at various points on the race course property.
• Tellytrack Presenters to practice social distancing during interviews which should be conducted with a glass/plastic shield between them and the interviewee. Face masks should be worn at all times during the interview.
• There will be no physical interaction between people at all times on the race course, this includes post-race celebrations.
• All protective equipment that is disposed of should be deposited in refuse bins as provided on the race course.
• Upon completion of their respective function/duty, each person is required to leave the race course as soon as possible.


• Riders are to proceed to the Jockeys’ Room immediately upon arrival at the race course and to ensure that they settle in a position that is in line with social distancing of 1.5 metres between persons.
• All equipment should be thoroughly disinfected before arriving on course and again when arriving home after races.
• No equipment should be shared between Riders.
• Frequent hand washing and sanitising should take place.
• Face masks should be worn at all times, including during a race.
• There will be no parade ring activity, the focus should be on the canter past to ensure that the horses are filmed whilst adhering to social distancing principles.
• Riders are to mount the horses in the saddling enclosure and to proceed directly to the Start after parading in front of the Grand Stand in numerical order.
• Riders are to place their skull caps and crops on a table next to the scale when weighing in to avoid contact with another person.
• Whilst proceeding to the Start, the 1.5 metre social distance rule should be practiced.
• Use of the sweat box will not be permitted on RACE DAY.
• Whilst parading at the Start, the 1.5 metre social distancing rule must be practiced.
• Riders are not to dismount their horses at the start.


• Race time schedules are to be carefully considered to ensure that any group of people are not together for a protracted period of time.
• All Handlers are to practice hand sanitisation and wear face masks at all times.
• Social distancing of at least 1.5 metres to be practiced by all Starting personnel.
• Horses to be loaded by odd and even draws to facilitate spacing between Riders and Handlers in the stalls for as long as possible.
• Fractious/stubborn horses will be withdrawn if their racing manners result that a number of Handlers have to load them and consequently the social distancing principles cannot be adhered to.
• Officials at the Start are to enforce the 1.5 metre social distancing guidelines and the wearing of face masks and gloves.
• The starting stalls are to be thoroughly sanitised before and after every race.
These directions will be effective immediately. The NHA further provides notice that any person who breaches these directions will be subject to a significant fine. It should also be noted that nothing in this Notice derogates from the powers of Stipendiary Stewards to either suspend any person and/or deny them access to a race course.

The provisions of Rule 72.1.40 are applicable:


Without in any way derogating from the provisions of the RULES, no PERSON shall:-

72.1.40 fail or refuse to comply with any reasonable order, direction or requirement of any LICENSED OFFICIAL.

A D Hyde
Racing Control Executive