Punters warned off as Newmarket gears up for much-anticipated return of unbeaten Pinatubo in Saturday’s Qipco 2,000 Guineas
- People told to stay away and not be tempted to try to gain a glimpse of Pinatubo
- The headquarters of British Flat racing is subject to rigid biosecurity measures
- Securing the open grassland surrounding the track is a logistical impossibility
Newmarket has urged people to stay away from this week’s meeting and not be tempted to try to gain a glimpse of the much-anticipated return of unbeaten Pinatubo in Saturday’s Qipco 2,000 Guineas.
The headquarters of British Flat racing is subject to the same rigid biosecurity measures as other tracks but the vast, open grassland that surrounds the Rowley Mile racecourse makes securing the entire site a logistical impossibility.
Erecting a fence around the track, like Newmarket’s Jockey Club owners will do on the Epsom Downs to allow the Investec Derby to be run on July 4, is not an option.
International handicappers rated Pinatubo as the best European two-year-old for 25 years
Newmarket supremo Amy Starkey said: ‘While we are excited to be delivering four days of racing this week, the sport’s return does not mean that things are back to normal, far from it.
‘We are writing to you to ask that you do your part to ensure these are the first steps on the road to recovery and not a damaging false start.
‘Racing’s return has been given the go ahead thanks to extensive work with Government to ensure the lowest possible risk of transmission of the virus.
‘We understand that watching the Qipco Guineas Festival on television will be an unusual experience. We only wish that we could throw open our doors to everybody but that is not possible.
The 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket next Saturday will be first major sporting event in Britain
‘In order to best support the sport we all love, we are asking you to stay at home and enjoy the racing on Racing TV and ITV.
‘Please do not come to the Rowley Mile for any reason unless you are supposed to be joining us and have gone through the various stages of the entry procedure, and please do not attempt to gain entry to the site by any other means.
‘It is our shared responsibility to ensure racing’s return is a success and by staying away now, you will be doing your bit to ensure you can come back as soon as possible.’
Racing returns to Newmarket on Thursday with dual Ascot Gold Cup winner Stradivarius running in Friday’s Hurworth Bloodstock Coronation Cup against a field which includes 2019 race winner Defoe, Aidan O’Brien’s 2019 Derby winner Anthony Van Dyck and Charlie Appleby’s Ghaiyyath.