Talking Horses: Haydock's happy return as racing opens its doors

By: Greg Wood at Haydock Thursday 3 December 2020

Face masks, one-way systems and closed bars could not detract from the joy of being back trackside for racing punters

Sean, from Barrow-in-Furness, had planned to be in Lanzarote in the first week of December. Instead, he was at Haydock Park on Britain’s first day with crowds at sporting events since the middle of March, and looking on the bright side. “I backed the last winner,” he said, after Royal Pagaille’s unexpected success in the novice chase, “and the weather in Lanzarote at the moment is awful.”

He summed up the mood on a day at the races which was full of sights and sounds that would have seemed unthinkable this time last year. Face masks, sanitiser, one-way systems and regular reminders on the public address about social bubbles and the rule of six. “I’d come here once or twice a year and it’s nice to get out in the fresh air,” he said. “Everyone’s used to all that stuff now.”

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