BHA give strongest indication yet that racing WILL return at Newcastle on Monday but sport awaits government go-ahead

GET your formbooks ready was the signal given by the BHA on Friday afternoon.

Trainers made their 72-hour declarations for Monday's card at Newcastle and 'the long break is nearly over' was the latest from the seemingly confident authority.

This is despite the government yet to give the green light to a resumption on Monday afternoon.

Ten races are set to take place and, as expected, each race is full to the max with 12 runners after a bumper number of original entries.

A total of 317 horses were declared before the balloting process from an initial entry of 369 for the first meeting in Britain since March 17, when racing came to an abrupt halt due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It means 197 missed out and some disappointed owners and trainers, albeit if half-expected.

The BHA said in a statement: "We're counting down the hours to the return of racing and looking forward to official confirmation from the UK Government after it has published its guidelines for the resumption of sport in the next day or so. The long break is nearly over.

"This morning, we've been busy processing the declarations received for Newcastle's fixture on June 1 and we are now implementing our new medical screening procedures to ensure we safeguard those who plan to be there on Monday for racing's return."


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