Racing in France is poised to return next week with Paris police giving permission for the sport to resume at ParisLongchamp, the home of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
There have been no meetings since March 17 because of the coronavirus pandemic, with a number of meetings held without spectators leading up to that date.
France Galop has been working towards a resumption on May 11, with key Guineas trials, the Prix de la Grotte and Prix de Fontainebleau, scheduled for Monday’s opening day at ParisLongchamp which now has police approval.
“We obtained and received from the Prefecture de Police de Paris the authorisation to resume racing on May 11. This is very good news and a real victory!” France Galop president Edouard de Rothschild tweeted.
Olivier Delloye, chief executive of France Galop, admitted his relief at clearing that particular hurdle.
“I was very much relieved by the news we got this morning.
“As we already announced, we have had some strong support from the ministers in charge of racing – the ministers for finance and agriculture – so it was more a question of local areas allowing us to proceed.
“We have explained in close detail how we will race behind closed doors and we have had positive feedback from them.”
Initially there will be no horses or jockeys competing from outside France and meetings will be held with strict protocols.