Horse Racing Ireland has said that no Irish trained horses or Irish jockeys should go to the UK to compete until the ban on travel to the UK expires.
The Irish government today announced a new set of restrictions for Ireland in light of a rise in Covid-19 cases, which introduces a raft of new restrictions across a range of sectors in society.
The travel ban to the UK, which had been in place initially for 48 hours, has been extended until December 31st, and Horse Racing Ireland says no horses or jockeys from Ireland should travel cross-channel until that expires.
In addition, the HRI also says that 'declarations for UK-trained horses to race in Ireland will not be accepted during that time.'
Speaking this afternoon, the Chief Executive of Horse Racing Ireland Brian Kavanagh says the arrival of a travel ban between the UK and Ireland is a 'once-in-a-generation occurrence.'
“The concern from Government is very clear: these are exceptional times and a travel ban with the UK is a once-in-a-generation occurrence," Mr Kavanagh said.
“Irish racing has followed Government advice at all times during Covid-19 and will continue to do so. In that regard, we are advising that no Irish-trained horses or jockeys should travel to the UK for competition between now and December 31, and no UK horses or jockeys should travel in the opposite direction.”
As part of the restrictions, horse racing and greyhound racing will be able to continue in Ireland, but only behind closed doors.
The plan also says that sport at professional or elite level can continue - but no matches are permitted beyond that. Golf and tennis will also be allowed continue, after also falling by the wayside during the last period of severe restrictions in March and April, and again in November.