21 March 2020
Well, it is has been a strange week to say the least.... It started off with racing as normal at Hereford and Market Rasen, and then quickly we went behind closed doors at both Taunton and Wetherby on Tuesday. It was great to have the final winner of the day and effectively the final winner of the National Hunt season with Glencassley, because by Wednesday we were shut down completely... Now we are trying to work out when racing might re-commence. Arguably the BHA might have been premature in closing down racing altogether especially as Ireland are continuing behind 'closed doors', but it is such a very difficult time for everyone you can sort of see their reasoning for it when every other sport has shut itself down.
However it has put the whole racing industry under a huge amount of pressure. We've all heard about staff being 'laid off' and we are all going to take a hit. There have been plenty of yard meetings this week, trying to work out what we can all do and ideas such as unpaid time off and reduced hours has been talked about. However, last night's announcement by the Chancellor was very welcome news saying that up to 80% contributions to staff wages would be met by the government. I hope that my lot will be eligible.... At least the governement are trying their hardest to help us small businesses.... and if we are all eligible the Summer might not be as stressful as first thought.