National Trainers Federation supportive of BHA move

‘Very strong sense’ among people to work together, says NTF chief.

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Rupert Arnold, chief executive of the National Trainers Federation, believes there is a feeling of everyone pulling together as racing braces itself for the unprecedented scenario of all meetings being held behind closed doors, initially until the end of March.

The coronavirus outbreak has already seen fixtures in Ireland and Scotland switched to being staged without spectators, and the British Horseracing Authority has announced that is likely to be the situation in the whole of Britain later in the week.

“I think everybody who is involved in staging the sport is going to have to adapt to the very unusual circumstances and we will all have to work together to deal with those issues and challenges that will arise,” said Arnold.

“We’ll have to do things differently and come to some uncomfortable compromises, but that is all in the interest of protecting the livelihoods of everybody involved in the sport and protecting their health and safety as well.

“We have to adapt, but I feel there is a very strong sense among everybody involved to work together on this. People are thinking very much along the same lines and working out the best way to do this. There is a good spirit of co-operation.”

Arnold had expected the BHA to move towards the restrictive measures due to the escalation of the virus.

“I think that along with most of my colleagues in racing this is a decision that was looking increasingly inevitable,” he said.

“We’re all very mindful of both the need to keep the wheels of the industry turning, but also our wider duty to the public’s health and safety and the way things are moving rapidly and how other sports have responded.

“I think this was inevitable after the last 24-48 hours that we would probably have to make this decision.”

National Trainers Federation supportive of BHA move
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