BHA confirms postponement of one race at Newcastle meeting on Thursday 8 February

08 Feb 2024 BHA Features

The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) and Arena Racing Company (ARC) can confirm that the Find More Big Deals At BetUK Handicap (Class 6), which was due to be staged at Newcastle at 5.05pm today (Thursday 8 February) has been postponed and will be run as part of Saturday’s card at the same venue.

This move has been agreed after it was identified this morning that the race, which is scheduled to take place over 1m2f42y on the round course, was due to go off after sunset. Only the straight course at Newcastle is covered by floodlights, meaning that it would not be safe to stage the race as planned due to low light.

The BHA’s General Instructions state that in no circumstances will a race time be altered so that a race is run earlier than the advertised race time. This is due to the implications for the betting public, alongside potential regulatory, safety and logistical issues. While alternative solutions were explored, the decision has ultimately been made to postpone the race.

Connections of the ten declared runners have been contacted by the BHA to advise of this change, as well as to offer an apology and a reimbursement payment to assist with costs incurred in having made arrangements for the race to be staged as planned.

The race will now be staged as part of Saturday’s card at Newcastle. Original declarations will stand, however non-runners will be allowed without penalty. The opening race of today’s meeting will be delayed by ten minutes, from 4.30 to 4.40, in order to reduce the gap between that race and the 5.35. The remainder of today’s card will continue as scheduled from race three onwards.

We are sorry for any inconvenience and confusion resulting from this error. We will now take steps to identify what caused this issue to ensure it is not repeated.

Notes to Editors

  1. The BHA schedules approximately 10,000 races in a year (10,019 in 2023).
  2. BHAGI 2.12 paragraph 6 states that “In no circumstances will a race time be altered so that a race is run earlier than the advertised race time”. The relevant BHAGI can be found here.