Goodwood stewarding team changed after positive Covid test
Late jockey changes are not unusual on the racecourse but a fresh team of stewards had to be drafted in on day three of the Qatar Goodwood festival on Thursday following a positive Covid-19 case in a close contact of the intended stewarding team.
The issue came to light on Wednesday evening, according to the BHA, when a new team were placed on standby. Simon Cowley took over the chief steward role on the day from the BHA's head of stewarding Shaun Parker, while steward Fergus Sweeney stepped in for Sam Angell.
"Following the detection of a positive Covid-19 case in a close contact of the stewarding team, the stewards due to attend Goodwood today instead stayed at home and were replaced by others deemed not to be at risk," said a BHA spokesman.
The sport's governing body said the late change was a reminder that racecourse personnel need to stay on their guard.
The spokesman added: "This should serve as a reminder to all that, despite the recent lifting of restrictions in England, the virus continues to pose a threat. It is important, therefore, that we all behave responsibly and that those in weighing-room complexes at racecourses across Britain follow the protocols in place."
The bulk of Covid-19 measures that have been in place on racecourses in England since June 1 last year, including the requirement to wear face coverings or pre-book attendance, were removed on July 19 but the weighing room continues to be closely controlled.
Entry remains restricted to jockeys, valets and staff linked to the racecourse, the BHA and medics. Social distancing rules have also been retained, while saunas remain out of bounds. Anyone working in the weighing room is permitted to attend only one fixture a day.
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