The professionals and equestrian leaders will listen with great attention, this Wednesday evening, to the intervention of Emmanuel Macron. In particular those of the company of the Trotting, for which started yesterday the winter meeting on the hippodrome of Vincennes, a meeting eagerly awaited each year by the professionals and the turfists.
The Head of State, faced with the resurgence of the Covid-19 epidemic, must announce a tightening of health measures. The announcement of a second four-week confinement period, apparently less restrictive than in March, is to be feared.
“We would never end at 7 pm”
Jacques Rossi, president of the company of the races of Marseille (Bouches-du-Rhône), is already scratching his head in front of the situation to come. “By the end of the year, we still have fourteen meetings scheduled on our Marseille-Vivaux and Marseille-Borély racetracks. Considering canceling them is a real worry. And, in the event that the advanced curfew is preferred, the schedules of our programs, validated for a year by the PMU, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. would pose a problem. We would never finish at 7:00 p.m. “
A wind of optimism is blowing on the horizon, however, according to information collected by sports journalists in our daily life from a close friend of President Macron. “There is no scenario in which we would consider it essential to have to interrupt or suspend professional sport. […] In the diversity of solutions that exist today to adapt our response to the virus situation, none provides, to date, for a suspension of professional sport activities. “
Horse racing was the first sport to have received the green light from the government to resume its activity behind closed doors on May 11 after two months of hiatus. The racing companies under the aegis of France Galop and Le Trot have proven that they are able to comply with the sanitary instructions, as has been the case throughout this summer, with the return of the public limited to 1 000 people.
What about PMU points of sale?
At the company of the races in Lyon, Yann Souillet-Désert, in charge of communication, does not want to darken the picture. “The climate is anxiety-provoking enough to project yourself. Let’s wait for Emmanuel Macron’s statement. Races are scheduled for next Sunday at the Lyon-la Soie racecourse. We will follow the guidelines of our parent companies so that everything runs smoothly, as we have done in the past in this context. Sixteen meetings have yet to be disputed, by December 31, on the two racetracks of the Lyon metropolis.
If the races were to follow their normal course, the question of PMU’s outlets, which generate more than 85% of the operator’s turnover, will arise. Will they be open, and in what proportion, to allow riders to bet? If the betting activity were, as in the spring, to fall to 10% of its usual level, the sector would have enough to feed serious concerns.
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr