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Horse Racing

Derby and Guineas meetings postponed

7th April 2020, 18:02 by Aidan Perkins

Newmarket's Guineas meeting in May and the Derby meeting at Epsom in June have both been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Guineas meeting was scheduled to take place on May 2 and 3, while the Derby meeting was planned for June 5 and 6.

It's hoped the first four Classics of the 2020 Flat season can be held at a later date, once racing has resumed later in the summer.

A Jockey Club racecourses (JCR) statement read: "Given the importance of the three-year-old Classic programme to the careers of that generation of horses, and the racing and bloodstock industries as a whole, JCR is now in talks with the British Horseracing Authority, participants and other key stakeholders, including the Horserace Betting Levy Board and commercial partners, to reschedule the first four Classics at later dates, once racing has resumed in Britain.

"JCR is looking to provide participants with the opportunity to ensure their horses are in peak condition with preparation races and adequate spacing between the QIPCO 2000 Guineas and QIPCO 1000 Guineas, run over a mile, and The Investec Derby and The Investec Oaks, run over a mile and a half."

Amy Starkey, who runs Newmarket Racecourses as East Regional Director for Jockey Club Racecourses, said in quotes carried by Sky Sports: "With less than a month until the QIPCO Guineas Festival, trainers need to know whether to step up preparations for their Guineas horses or put that on pause for a later date.

"The future is too uncertain at the moment and there is no opportunity for any preparation races before such important contests for the 2020 Classic generation.

"Therefore, we feel now is the right time to take the decision to cancel the QIPCO Guineas Festival and turn our attention to determining, in conjunction with the BHA, participants and stakeholders, the earliest possible opportunity to reschedule the QIPCO 2000 Guineas and the QIPCO 1000 Guineas."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Aidan Perkins is a senior journalist that specialises in football stories. Aidan, a Liverpool fan, also has a broad knowledge of several other sports.

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