Laurel Park will reopen Thursday, Oct. 15, to a limited number of patrons after having received the go-ahead from Anne Arundel County government.
The county’s approval came after Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan issued a revised executive order allowing racetracks to accommodate up to 250 “spectators,” a number that doesn’t include the licensed personnel who have had access in order to conduct live racing programs or licensed owners. Laurel Park reopened for racing May 30 after a two-and-a-half-month shutdown because of COVID-19 restrictions, and soon after permitted licensed owners to view races from the apron.
In a letter to the Anne Arundel County Health Department, MJC President Sal Sinatra noted that Laurel and Pimlico Race Course have conducted live racing “under strict protocols to ensure the safety of all participants in racing—jockeys, stewards, owners, trainers, horsemen, backstretch workers, support staff and others” with success. The MJC also submitted a list of protocols for the return of patrons to Laurel.
The grandstand entrance at Laurel Park, which is equipped with a thermal camera for temperature screening, will be the primary entrance for employees, patrons and owners each day. The Horsemen’s entrance near the Racing Office and paddock will be staffed only on live racing days beginning at 8 a.m. for trainers, jockeys and backstretch personnel that require access.
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