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Sydney air quality safe for racing

Racing officials will continue to monitor Sydney’s air quality but they have given the green light for race meetings at Randwick and Rosehill to go ahead.

Friday’s twilight meeting at Randwick was in doubt because of hazardous air quality conditions, the result of smoke from bush fires burning around the Sydney rim.

Chief steward Marc Van Gestel said conditions were better than anticipated and at this stage the twilight program, along with Saturday’s meeting at Rosehill, would proceed.

“We’ve had our stewards and vets out at the track early this morning assessing the conditions and they’re clearly much better than what was forecast and we’re able to proceed on that basis,” Van Gestel told Sky Sports radio.

“At the current readings, we’re of the view it is fine for racing.

“Obviously we will continue to monitor it throughout the morning and early afternoon to ascertain whether there is any change.

“But the forecast is for it to remain similar to what it is now.”

A nine-race card is scheduled for Rosehill on Saturday, including an important two-year-old race for a handful of youngsters vying to qualify for the Magic Millions Classic.

Van Gestel said racing officials would test the air quality on race morning but conditions were expected to be safe for racing.

“We will have the stewards and vets on the ground there to see and determine the conditions but we are hopeful there’s going to be some slight improvement from what we see today,” Van Gestel said.

Several NSW race meetings have been lost in recent weeks because of poor air quality associated with smoke from bush fires that have ravaged the state.

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