NYRA announces updated jockey protocols for Aqueduct winter meet
by Pat McKenna
The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) today announced updated COVID-19 health and safety protocols for jockeys competing at the Aqueduct Racetrack winter meet which runs through Sunday, March 28.
As of March 1, out of town riders not established in the NYRA colony may ride at Aqueduct upon completion of two negative COVID-19 PCR tests within five days of race day. Incoming riders will be provided isolated jockey quarters. All COVID-19 testing must be performed in New York state.
Prior to March 1, Aqueduct Racetrack was closed to riders that were not considered members of the NYRA winter jockey colony—as listed in the condition book- as of December 31.
Members of the regular NYRA jockey colony who travel to ride at any other racetrack during the Aqueduct winter meet will continue to be required to provide two negative COVID-19 PCR tests taken within a 5-day window in order to return to ride at Aqueduct. Jockeys traveling out of state who have completed the required testing will then be physically isolated in the jockey quarters for three additional calendar days.
In addition to race day safety protocols which include standard health screening and temperature checks, the jockey quarters at Aqueduct have been substantially altered to provide maximum social distancing and reduce density. All areas accessed by jockeys during the regular course of a race day are closed to outside personnel, including credentialed media, and are cleaned and disinfected throughout the day.
Jockeys are not permitted access to the barn area at Belmont Park.
Jockey agents must produce a negative COVID-19 PCR test in order to gain access to the barn area. Races will continue to be drawn via Zoom.
Valets working in in the jockey quarters are not permitted in the barn area.
Live racing in March will be offered Friday through Sunday through the conclusion of the winter meet on March 28.
For additional information, please visit https://www.nyra.com/.