MAYSTAR ridden by Hollie Doyle 1st in The Independent Catering Novice Stakes at Lingfield 27/7/19 Copyright: Ian Headington/

BHA Update – Racing nearing a return

5th May 2020

We hope all our website users are safe and well. Positive vibes continue to reach us from well-connected industry sources to suggest racing is nearing a return.

During this challenging time we have maintained our usual close contact with all of our trainers and have been doing our utmost to keep our owners up to date, both in terms of the overall situation and the progress of their horses.

It’s probably fair to say we’ve all improved our knowledge of technology in the past month or so and that technology has been key in us helping to try and take the horses to their owners in terms of videos and photos on top of our usual information stream.

We’ve done a few different things too, including a quiz for owners and a sweepstake on the Virtual Grand National, which saw the owners of Rebel Soldier Boy and Soaring Star prevail.

One thing that must be said is how incredible our wonderful Hambleton owners have been. Right from the start we’ve been inundated with messages of support, which has only strengthened our resolve to ensure the best possible results for all on the racecourse when racing resumes.

Like most of the country, we’ve been following the news and daily briefings with interest. It was most encouraging to see the Racing Post confirm a provisional date for the return to racing of Friday 15th May has been set by the BHA.

A tremendous amount of work is being done behind the scenes by everyone and there is a real feeling of the industry pulling together, working in consultation with government ministers to ensure racing can resume as soon as possible once deemed appropriate at that level.

Nobody is counting any chickens just yet, but hopes are high that a return to action is on the horizon. We understand an initial race program is about to be published and ourselves and our trainers can’t wait to get working through the options and get some races selected. The horses will certainly be ready to go when the time comes.

Our two-year-olds are a forward group overall this year with Archie Watson (Thread Count), David O’Meara (Country Carnival) and Kevin Ryan (Tinochio) all having youngsters they feel will be ready to run soon.

Several other two-year-olds are not far off either while our older horse squad are pretty much all ready for action too.

Collectively, the trainers report the horses to be in great form which is testament to both the dedication and professionalism of the trainers and their staff, who have ensured the horses have continued in their normal routine right through this challenging period.

Ourselves and our owners have expressed our gratitude to the staff with messages of support recently which we understand was a real morale booster, which was nice to hear.

For our part we would like to once again highlight the support of our owners. Owners are the driving force of the racing industry. Our owners have shown themselves to be exceptionally thoughtful and supportive in the most trying of circumstances for which we are hugely grateful.

Stay safe and well everyone. We hope that you’re looking forward, just as we are, to racing’s return.