Warwick races given permission to run spectator pilot event

Warwick will become the next racecourse to admit spectators after its planned crowd trial was given the green light.

Tickets for Monday's National Hunt card will be split between racehorse owners, annual members and hospitality bookers.

But only up to 474 people are permitted to be at the track during the afternoon, according to the latest coronavirus guidelines.

General manager at Warwick, Andre Klein, said: "I’d like to thank the range of local stakeholders we have held constructive discussions with to achieve this outcome.

“We have followed their requirements and made concessions to our original plan to significantly limit the number of people at the racecourse, but we will still gain very helpful insights from those who do attend and understand and appreciate the complexities facing those who were involved in making this decision.”

Associate Director of Public Health at Warwickshire County Council, Emily van de Venter, said: “I’m very grateful for all the work that has gone into ensuring the event runs in the safest possible way for all involved and look forward to hearing feedback following the event itself.”

Doncaster held a crowd pilot a week ago, when around 2,500 racegoers were welcomed through the turnstiles on day one of the St Leger meeting.

The trial was due to last several days, but it was halted on the grounds of public health and public safety.

It was the first time in six months people other than those crucial to the running of the meeting were allowed on course.

Later this month, up to 1,000 spectators a day can go to Newmarket's Cambridgeshire meeting, from September 24-26.

Warwick's attendees next week will comprise of 150 annual members, 124 in hospitality and up to 200 racehorse owners.

Racing resumed on June 1 behind closed doors, after a 10-week suspension during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

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