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Racing continues in Vic despite lockdown

Despite returning to stage three lockdowns in Melbourne, racing in Victoria will continue as it has done throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

However racehorse owners will be banned from attending meetings at 11 racecourses located within Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire that have been placed in a six-week lockdown announced by the Victorian government on Tuesday.

Those racetracks are Flemington, Caulfield, Sandown, The Valley, Werribee, Yarra Valley, Mornington, Cranbourne, Pakenham, Kilmore and Seymour.

Owners from within those lockdown areas are banned from all race meetings in Victoria, though owners from outside of those areas are free to attend meetings at any Victorian meeting, except for the 11 racetracks, providing they pre-register.

Racing and training has continued throughout Victoria since the initial stage three restrictions were announced in March under strict biosecurity measures and crowd free until last month when owners were gradually allowed back on course.

Racing Victoria says it will continue to review all industry protocols based on risk analysis, industry compliance, participant feedback and the broader community to ensure the safe continuation of racing and training.

RV chief executive Giles Thompson said trainers, jockeys and stable employees are permitted to continue attending training centres, licensed premises and race meetings in their capacity as an approved worker.

“I implore all licensed and registered participants to remain vigilant and to continue to adhere all industry protocols and Government directives as they have done for more than 160 race meetings,” Thompson said.

Racing NSW announced on Wednesday a ban on horses trained in Victoria from racing in NSW for an indefinite period.

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