Victoria temporarily suspends racing pending Covid test

Racing at Sandown on Wednesday

Racing at Sandown on Wednesday

Racing Victoria has suspended racing on Wednesday and Thursday while a licenced participant undergoes a coronavirus test.

"We have had information an industry participant who recently participated in Sydney has possibly been exposed to COVID-19 so we have abandoned the meeting", Racing NSW chief steward Wade Birch said.

"Racing NSW received advice this afternoon that an interstate participant - who attended the Rosehill Gardens meeting on Saturday, 21 March 2020 - has received advice from health authorities that a commercial flight he caught on 12 March 2020 has had another passenger from that flight that has tested positive to COVID-19", it said.

Leading West Australian jockey William Pike rode at the All-Star Mile meeting at Caulfield on March 14 while Tasmanian rider Anthony Darmanin was at last Friday's William Reid Stakes at Moonee Valley.

Jockeys have also been isolated from each other, while both Racing Victoria and Racing NSW have implemented border restrictions requiring those not in the state to self isolate before they are allowed in any licensed premises.

"QRIC Stewards became aware today, that a New South Wales harness driver who had driven at Penrith on Thursday night and Bathurst on Friday night had been in contact with a person who is now awaiting test results for the Covid-19 virus".

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"We spent a lot of time putting protocols in place and educating the participants", Thompson told

"The participant has done exactly the right thing and we've been notified and everything we put in place has swung into action".

They are not showing any symptoms and if the results come back negative on Thursday, authorities hope to get racing up and running again the following day.

Four harness racing participants have been stood down as a precautionary measure due to potential exposure to Coronavirus.

"Unfortunately this exposure came before those protocols were put in place, 13 days ago".

"If the participant's test is negative, then we will look to resume racing as soon as we can".

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