The horses are back but space hoppers get a bigger welcome

The horses are back but space hoppers get a bigger welcome

Many in racing have taken the opportunity to go on holiday, with the slopes of France proving a particularly popular destination for leading jockeys. Leading rider Aidan Coleman went to Chamonix, but is pleased to have cut short his getaway.

“It’s good to be back,” he says. “A week is not a long time to be without racing. You’ve got to remember that it’s been a mild winter and we’d normally lose a similar amount of meetings to bad weather.

“Obviously, most jockeys are not earning money when they don’t ride, but the BHA has been very good at keeping everybody informed and providing clarity.”

Plumpton racecourse chief executive Daniel Thompson is also pleased racing has resumed in time for this fixture.

He says: “For a small, independent racecourse like us, racedays are our bread and butter. We are insured against the losses of some fixtures but we lost our previous one to snow, so it would have been be a blow to lose two in a row. We’re delighted to be racing again.”

For once, the biggest losers are the bookmakers. Tony Styles, who trades as Bob Stock, bemoans the loss of Saturday’s fixture at Newbury, saying: “It’s one of the best weekend meetings of the year and I was shocked that racing was brought to a halt. It was an over-reaction”.

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