Derby and Oaks to be held behind closed doors at Epsom after local council past Jockey Club plans

Derby and Oaks to be held behind closed doors at Epsom in July or August after local council pass Jockey Club proposals

  • Jockey Club wants to stage the Derby and Oaks on a one-day seven race card
  • Local council supported the proposal to stage the races behind closed doors
  • But the fixture does remain subject to BHA and Government approval

An application to run the Investec Derby and Oaks on a Saturday in July or August was on Tuesday night unanimously approved by the Conservators of Epsom and Walton Downs.

The Conservators also approved an application to erect fencing around the entire racecourse and grandstand complex – an area of 150 Hectares – to ensure the race can be safely run behind closed doors.

These fences would be covered to restrict viewing, reducing the likelihood of crowds would gather to watch from a distance.

The Jockey Club wants to stage the Derby and Oaks on a one-day seven race card on July 4

The Jockey Club, which runs Epsom, has said July 4 is their preferred date to stage the Derby at its historic home.

The application was presented to the Conservators by Simon Durrant, General Manager of Epsom Racecourse. He said it would take three days to erect the fencing but that residents and the local training community would have access to the Downs while the fencing was being erected.

Delia Bushell, Group Chief Executive of The Jockey Club, said: ‘We are working hard on a practical and deliverable plan to stage the 2020 Investec Derby and Oaks at their traditional home, without a crowd and once racing is approved to resume by government.

‘I’d like to express my sincere thanks to the Epsom and Walton Downs Conservators for their backing.’

The Derby should have been run on June 6.

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