Behind Closed Doors protocols update and reminders

27 Oct 2020 BHA Features Racecourse

The BHA regularly reviews and updates the Guidelines and Operating Procedures for behind closed doors racing, to reflect any recent developments, improve and simplify our processes, and provide clarity for racecourse attendees. All raceday attendees should ensure they are using the most recent version of the document.

The latest version of the protocols can be viewed here. Where sections have been added or updated, this is specified in the Document Control table on page 4 and indicated in the text.

We have also highlighted below some of the more significant changes, principally the mandatory use of face coverings at all fixtures, together with other important reminders about infection control on the racecourse and advanced planning for raceday.

Face coverings

Face coverings must be worn at all times by all racecourse attendees. They should be worn from point of arrival at the course and throughout the day until point of departure, apart from where specific exemptions apply. Full details are available on the BHA website.

Face coverings add an additional layer of protection, which alongside social distancing, handwashing and other infection control measures, help reduce the risk of the virus being transmitted on the racecourse.

Please note that while we now recommend face coverings without valves as these offer superior protection to those around the wearer, we are not instructing attendees to replace their existing face coverings. We just advise that when reusable masks wear out after their maximum number of wash cycles, they are replaced with a new valveless alternative.

Racecourse Zone integrity

The use of zones – the Green Zone for participants and the Amber Zone for Owners – is a key intervention to reduce transmission of the virus on course.

Participants and Owners must not cross from one zone to the other, as doing so weakens the infection controls and could lead to many more people being quarantined for 14 day if there is a positive COVID-19 case, as well as risking people’s health.

Only essential racecourse staff and those with express permission in advance from the Racecourse or BHA may cross between zones. See the BHA protocols for more information.

Declaring staff

Trainers are reminded to declare stable staff for each fixture using the Declare Staff area on Racing Admin. Staff can be declared as soon as you have made your declaration to run and must be completed by 1pm on the day of declaration.

Once declared, staff will receive their online health screening questionnaire. This will be sent to the email address that appears for the member of staff on the Stable Employee Register, so please ensure that each member of staff has a valid email address that is checked regularly.

To include additional personnel that are not on the Stable Employee Register (e.g. horse transporters, specialist stalls handlers), please email covidhelpdesk@britishhorseracing.com with their name, individual email address and role at the fixture.

More information about the process, including a step by step guide, can be read here.

Requesting raceday privileges via Racing Admin

Trainers submitting information relating to their horse that would normally be reported at the on-course declaration desk should complete a Raceday Privilege Request via the Declare Staff section of Racing Admin.

The deadline for submitting a Raceday Privilege Request is 1pm the day before the fixture. Detailed instructions on how to do this are available here.

There will not be a declarations desk at the course on raceday, and access to the Weighing and Stewards’ Room will be restricted.

Please note that yards must select a primary contact for the runner from the staff declared as attending the fixture, so the staff declaration should be completed before the Raceday Privilege Request.