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23 March 2020

Parliamentary Group behind sport and Racing Welfare ready to respond

Well-known racing MPs Conor McGinn and Laurence Robertson have co-signed a letter outlining their support of the industry during the coronavirus pandemic.

The letter states: “We supported the difficult but correct decision to suspend racing. It was the only reasonable course of action to take for the public good, in the national interest and to preserve the longer-term reputation and positive image of our sport.

“We are now calling on the Government to recognise racing’s responsible actions by playing its role in securing the future and sustainability of our great sport, which makes such a significant financial, cultural and social contribution to our country.” 

As industry leaders focus on how the government’s job retention package can support racing, work is ongoing to respond to cases of immediate hardship and need.

Racing Welfare, the Jockey Club charity that supports the whole of racing’s workforce, has been preparing all week for an expected increase in demand for its services. It’s 24/7 Support Line is open to anyone needing assistance and people can also use a live chat service online if they prefer.

The charity, whose Chief Executive, Dawn Goodfellow is now part of the Industry’s COVID 19 Group, is planning to increase its capacity to channel help to those in immediate need. This is part of a wider discussion with The Racing Foundation about how a range of industry charities can respond to calls for help and assistance.

Dawn Goodfellow said: “It’s vital for people to know that help is available to anyone in racing. Everyone is feeling the strain but we really don’t want anyone to feel they can’t ask for help. Whilst self-isolation is necessary to combat the virus, we don ‘t want people in racing to feel isolated or with no-one to turn to. We’re here to help so please share your immediate problems with one of our experienced team.

“Racing’s Support Line is open 24/7 on 0800 6300 443 to anyone needing assistance or via live chat online at

Racing Welfare teams also contactable during weekday office hours via the numbers below:

  • Malton: 01653 696 869
  • Middleham:  01969 624 123
  • Lambourn: 01488 670 034
  • Newmarket: 01638 560 763
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