Statement from NYRA President & CEO Dave O'Rourke
by Pat McKenna
Statement from NYRA President & CEO Dave O’Rourke
“NYRA and the New York racing community are thankful for Governor Cuomo’s steady leadership throughout this public health crisis and we applaud his decision to authorize the resumption of horse racing, without fans, beginning on June 1,” said NYRA President & CEO Dave O’Rourke. “This is a reasoned and responsible decision by Governor Cuomo that will enable horse racing to resume in a way that prioritizes health and safety while recognizing that NYRA is the cornerstone of an industry responsible for 19,000 jobs and $3 billion in annual economic impact.
“We look forward to the resumption of live racing at Belmont Park with all appropriate health and safety protocols in place to support the hundreds of small businesses, family-owned farms and thousands of hourly workers who form the backbone of thoroughbred racing in New York.
“NYRA has developed a comprehensive safety plan that builds on our experience of operating training safely and responsibly during the pandemic, and includes extensive protocols to keep our community safe.
“With this safety plan in place, NYRA will announce race dates and a corresponding stakes schedule for the 2020 spring/summer meet at Belmont Park in the very near future.
“The Governor has reiterated during these challenging times that sports provide much needed entertainment for New Yorkers. Thanks to Governor Cuomo and his team, fans across New York and around the country can look forward to the return of horse racing from beautiful Belmont Park.”