Tag: COVID-19

Jockeys hoping to experience the rush of a Preakness stretch run must undergo COVID-19 testing in Maryland no later than 72 hours before their first race Preakness weekend. (Image: Pimlico Race Course)

Preakness Jockeys Subject to Drive-Up COVID-19 Tests, Other Protocols

Maryland Jockey Club officials announced Friday that jockeys riding Preakness weekend at Pimlico Race Course must undergo COVID-19 testing 72 hours prior to their first mount. That is one of numerous safety protocols MJC officials instituted for Preakness weekend. That begins Thursday, Oct. 1 and culminates with the 145th Preakness […]

This scene of well-dressed fans soaking up the Kentucky Derby atmosphere will not happen this year. Churchill Downs officials announced the 146th Kentucky Derby will run without fans due to a coronavirus spike. (Image: Eclipse Sportswire)

Officials Scratch Fans from Suddenly Spectator-Free Kentucky Derby

Churchill Downs officials announced on Friday that the 146th Kentucky Derby will run without fans, doubling-back on its fervent desire to run America’s most iconic horse race with a semblance of Derby atmosphere. The decision came in the wake of a spike in COVID-19 cases in Kentucky. The state reported […]

Colonial Downs has had a rough decade, exacerbated by a six-year closure. Now, the Virginia track canceled the rest of its 2020 season due to the coronavirus. (Image: Coady Photography)

Colonial Downs Cancels Remainder of 2020 Meet Due to COVID-19

Virginia’s Colonial Downs is the latest racing victim of COVID-19, announcing Friday evening that its canceled the remainder of its 2020 summer meet. The abrupt closure came three days after jockey Trevor McCarthy, who led the track’s jockey standings with 14 wins, tested positive for COVID-19. The Daily Racing Form […]

You won't see scenes like these from the 2019 Kentucky Derby infield at this year's Derby. The infield is closed for the Sept. 5 race and seating is limited to 40% of capacity. (Image: Christopher Fryer/Louisville Business First)

Churchill Downs Limit Kentucky Derby Attendance to 40% of Capacity

In further response to COVID-19 health and safety concerns, Churchill Downs Racetrack officials released a 62-page health and safety operations plan on Wednesday that will limit Kentucky Derby attendance to fewer than 23,000 guests for the Sept. 5 race. That total is less than 14% of the record 170,513 fans […]

Mike Smith and his fellow jockeys aren't smiling about Churchill Downs' mandate they give up two weeks of rides to ride in the Kentucky Derby or Kentucky Oaks. (Image: Julio Cortez/Associated Press)

Churchill Downs Orders Derby, Oaks Jockeys to Kentucky by August 24

In their latest response to the coronavirus pandemic, Churchill Downs officials issued a mandate on Monday to jockeys at both the Saratoga and Del Mar colonies. They need to be in Kentucky no later than Aug. 24 if they want to ride in the Kentucky Derby or Kentucky Oaks. That’s […]

This NASA map illustrates how temperature and rainfall patterns will change around the world by 2100. While the Earth heats up, MyBookie created a market to play global warming. (Image: NASA)

Betting Global Warming 101 — A Primer

He once set odds on where a tracking-device-enabled shark would be in a given body of water. So while David Strauss was playing with numbers in the water, the chief oddsmaker for MyBookie indulged his passion for creating real-life odds markets on a global scale. Make that a global warming […]

Lone Star Park returns to the racing scene after a two-week hiatus due to the coronavirus. (Image: NTRA)

After Abrupt Closure, Lone Star Park Resumes Racing

Two weeks after it abruptly suspended racing due to an employee testing positive for COVID-19, Lone Star Park in Texas resumes racing on Sunday. The track, located in the north Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie, made the announcement almost in secret. It announced the reopening on its Twitter feed, which […]

Del Mar was forced to close this weekend after 15 jockeys tested positive for COVID-19. The track is revamping its jockeys' room and instituting a travel ban on riders. (Image: Del Mar Thoroughbred Club)

Del Mar ‘Takes Weekend Off’ After 15 Riders Test Positive for COVID-19

Del Mar abruptly canceled its weekend racing card for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday after mass testing revealed 15 jockeys are positive for COVID-19. Del Mar Thoroughbred Club CEO Joe Harper said in a statement that in the wake of numerous Southern California-based jockeys testing positive out of the Los Alamitos […]

If you're riding this summer at iconic Saratoga Race Course, you're riding no place else. NYRA placed a travel ban on jockeys -- the latest effort to curb the coronavirus. (Image: Getty)

NYRA Bans Outside Riders From Prestigious Saratoga Meet

In an effort to control the rampaging coronavirus among jockeys, the New York Racing Association took an unprecedented step for its crown-jewel Saratoga meet on Tuesday, closing the meet to out-of-town jockeys. That means only members of the NYRA jockey colony, which currently consists of 22 regular jockeys and three […]

Florent Geroux became the latest high-profile jockey testing positive for the coronavirus. (Image: Pat McDonogh/Courier-Journal)

Florent Geroux Latest High-Profile Jockey Testing Positive for COVID-19

Florent Geroux joined the lengthening list of prominent jockeys testing positive for COVID-19 over the past week, revealing his positive test results on Twitter Tuesday morning. Unlike Martin Garcia, Luis Saez, Victor Espinoza, and Flavien Prat – all of whom tested positive in the last week — Geroux didn’t ride […]

Art Collector's 3 1/2-length victor in the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland vaulted him to the front row of Kentucky Derby contenders. His odds to win the Sept. 5 Derby plummeted on every futures board. (Image: Coady Photography)

Art Collector Becomes Hottest Object on Kentucky Derby Futures Board

Winning the Blue Grass Stakes made Art Collector the latest shiny object for Kentucky Derby bettors to focus on as his odds to win the Sept. 5 Run for Roses plunged across the board. On Circa Sports’ Kentucky Derby Futures Board, Art Collector sits at 7/1. He’s now the fourth […]

This is one of Flavien Prat's 98 victories this year, aboard Toinette in the Wilshire Stakes June 20. The West Coast's top jockey tested positive for COVID-19 Sunday. (Image: Benoit Photo/AP)

Flavien Prat is Fifth Los Alamitos Rider Testing Positive for COVID-19

The COVID-19 outbreak from Los Alamitos’ July 4 card claimed another jockey Sunday when Flavien Prat tested positive for the coronavirus. Prat, the West Coast’s leading rider, just captured the Santa Anita Park riding title. He’s also the fourth jockey from Los Alamitos’ Independence Day card to test positive, joining […]

Luis Saez was set to rejoin Maximum Security on July 18. Instead, he's off to quarantine after testing positive for the coronavirus. (Image: Getty)

Breakout Rider Luis Saez Tests Positive for COVID-19

Standout rider Luis Saez became the latest jockey testing positive for COVID-19 Friday, ending his run at Keeneland’s five-day summer meet and sending him into immediate quarantine. The jockey learned of the positive test after riding Fortuna to a second-place finish in a $70,000 maiden special weight race Friday. He […]

Like Charlatan, the horse Martin Garcia rode to victory in May's Arkansas Derby, Garcia is now on the shelf. He tested positive for the coronavirus and is quarantined for 14 days. (Image: Richard Rasmussen/Hot Springs Sentinel-Record)

Jockey Martin Garcia Latest Rider Testing Positive for Coronavirus

The COVID-19 pandemic invaded the horse racing world again this week when jockey Martin Garcia tested positive for the coronavirus. The news came after Kentucky health officials told Garcia about his positive test, according to the Daily Racing Form. Garcia’s agent, Jay Fedor, said Garcia was on his way to […]

Citing the coronavirus, Lone Star Park officials suddenly suspended racing following Sunday's first of nine scheduled races. (Image: Mike Stone/For the Dallas Morning News)

Lone Star Park Abruptly Closes, Cites COVID-19 as Reason

Lone Star Park suddenly suspended its Sunday racing card and officials announced via Twitter that they’re halting all racing at the Texas track until further notice. The announcement came from the track’s Twitter feed, which cited “an abundance of caution” due to COVID-19. It provided no further details, either on […]

The horses breaking from Del Mar's starting gate for its summer meet will undergo health scrutiny unlike any seen before. And they'll do it in front of empty grandstands at the seaside San Diego-area track. (Image: Horsephotos /Getty Images)

Del Mar Goes the Extra Miles Implementing Human, Horse Health Reforms

In this coronavirus era, you expect to read about the health protocols for Del Mar’s impending summer meet. But officials from the seaside track north of San Diego unveiled further guidelines addressing horse safety along with human safety. The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club (DMTC), which operates the track, announced the […]

Beginning Thursday, a limited number of fans will see the sight of horses making the turn at Ellis Park. The Kentucky track announced seven backstretch workers tested positive for the coronavirus. (Image: Coady Photography)

On Eve of Meet, Seven Ellis Park Workers Test Positive for COVID-19

Less than a week before Ellis Park Race Track’s most historic season is set to begin, the track announced that seven backstretch workers tested positive for COVID-19. Track officials announced their summer meet will begin as scheduled on Thursday, with limited fans in attendance. Of the seven Ellis Park backstretch […]

The Kentucky Derby infield brings out a smorgasbord of party-goers. While fans are allowed inside this year's Derby, don't expect the same raucous infield crowds for a typical Derby. (Image: Jamey Price/Getty)

Kentucky Derby Will Run with Spectators, Limited Access, Strict Rules

Churchill Downs officials announced Thursday that the 146th Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks will run with a limited and yet unspecified number of spectators, a decision made in consultation with Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear and state public health officials. In so doing, Churchill Downs is trying to make a concerted […]

Lone Star Park opened for racing May 22, but opens for fans this Sunday. It joins Minnesota's Canterbury Park in allowing spectators inside its racetracks. (Image: Brad Loper/Special to Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

Lone Star, Canterbury Break From Pack and Open Gates to Racing Fans

Breaking from a different gate than its larger racetrack brethren in this COVID-19 era, Lone Star Park will open its gates to fans beginning Sunday. The gates remain open through Aug. 11, the tentative end of the Texas racetrack’s summer meet. Beating Lone Star by four days in allowing fans […]

The image of a Kentucky Derby winner -- like Victor Espinoza aboard American Pharoah in 2015 - was absent from May due to the coronavirus. That impacted horse racing betting handles for the month. (Image: Mark Cornelison/Lexington Herald via Getty)

May’s Racing Economic Indicators Continue COVID-19 Plunge

Even with tracks emerging from coronavirus shutdowns throughout May, Thoroughbred racing handles for the month plummeted compared to their 2019 totals, according to Equibase’s monthly report on horse racing’s economic indicators. The biggest individual culprit for May’s decline was easy to pinpoint: no Kentucky Derby and no Preakness Stakes. The […]