Guineas Races Confirmed for Riccarton Park
CJC Board provides clarity
New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) yesterday released a proposed programme for a return to racing regarding racing dates and the Group and Listed race programme for July to November 2020.
The Canterbury Jockey Club (CJC) is scheduled to race on 3rd July then two further occasions in the month, albeit behind closed doors. It is disappointing but understandable that the Grand National Festival Of Racing will be a casualty this season with no South Island jumps racing and 2 days of racing at Riccarton Park in August, the 15th and 29th.
The CJC highlights this extract concerning the Club:
“We would like to acknowledge those Clubs which could be adversely impacted, including the Canterbury JC. While retaining their three-day NZ Cup Meeting it is proposed in the indicative calendar that the Guineas races could be transferred North for the 20/21 season only, depending on the NZTR Board’s assessment of the position in early July.”
We make the following comments in relation to the proposal that the Al Basti Equiworld New Zealand Two Thousand Guineas® and Barneswood Farm New Zealand One Thousand Guineas® be run elsewhere than Riccarton Park Racecourse in November 2020 and the interpretation by some that this is a ‘done deal’.
The NZTR release clearly states that it is a PROPOSAL only at this stage and states also:
- Final decisions will not be made until July.
- That there is an assumption that travel, and attendance will be limited due to COVID-19 alert level restriction. All New Zealanders are aware that this is a changing situation which will likely be quite different in July, let alone November, to what it is today.
- The Guineas Races COULD be transferred, not will be transferred.
- And if that situation were to arise that it is for 2020 only.
The CJC will be working closely with NZTR as we have to date. As the situation with the Alert levels unfolds the CJC will be making every endeavour to ensure that the Al Basti Equiworld New Zealand Two Thousand Guineas® and Barneswood Farm New Zealand One Thousand Guineas® can be run as they have since 1973 at their home, Riccarton Park Racecourse.
The CJC acknowledges that racing, like all New Zealand activities, is experiencing exceptionally difficult circumstances under the COVID-19 crisis and appreciates and supports the work being undertaken by NZTR to ensure that racing resumes as quickly and in as strong a form as possible.
You can download the CJC release here