Gustavo Posse, mayor of Buenos Aires city San Isidro, has revealed that horse racing activity is ready to return this month. The Hipódromo de San Isidro, one of the most important racetracks in the country, aims to host seven of the 14 races that it normally has on its regular schedule.
Posse shared the information in an interview with Clarín and said that all conditions are in place for the sporting action to resume. “I just visited the track, I met the authorities and the horses are ready to run tomorrow,” he explained.
“We know that there’s good will for the activity to return, it’s just that a meeting with the provincial regulator Institute of Lottery and Casinos of Buenos Aires (IPLyC) and representatives of the sector was delayed. We wanted to present the security protocols and obtain the authorization.”
Currently, the only activity allowed at the racecourse is horse training, but under strict security measures, which include the use of a mask.
“It’s not a contact sport, no one else is on the track besides the horse, the caretaker and the jockey,” added Posse. “It’s all designed so that there’s no contact. In order to access the tracks, people need to wash car wheels, check temperature levels, among other things.”
With more than 7,000 workers, the horse racing industry employs the same number or more than the automotive sector.
“We are not behind in salary payments, but we know that the Jockey Club is experiencing financial difficulties. We only perceive 1% of the bets made at the racetrack, because the majority come from agencies,” he explained.
Horse racing in the province of Buenos Aires stopped in March after the President, Alberto Fernández, set a mandatory quarantine to avoid the spread of the virus. Although casinos and bingos remain closed, provincial lotteries aim to reopen this week, as the Administrative Decision 919/2020 exempts agency officials from the lockdown.