Del Mar Racetrack To Open Season Today Without Fans in the Stands

July 10, 2020

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club will begin its 81st summer meet today with no fans in the stands for the first time because of the coronavirus pandemic.

"Safety and health will be our focus for the people involved with putting on this year's extraordinary race meet, but we'll also be continuing with our safety reforms for the well being of our riders and horses,'" said Del Mar Thoroughbred Club CEO Joe Harper.

Del Mar will hold racing Fridays through Sundays for all but the final week of the meet when racing will be held Friday through Monday with the meet concluding, as is traditional, on Labor Day. There will be 10 races each Friday and Sunday and 11 on Saturdays, except for tomorrow when there will be 10. First post daily will be 2pm.

Even with no fans in attendance, Del Mar will conduct the 26th Opening Day Hats Contest today. The contest is open to anyone forwarding pictures using the hashtag #DelMarHatsContest and tagging @DelMarRacing in the photo on Instagram or Twitter. The entry deadline is 6pm. The profile must be publicly accessible to be viewed and judged. The grand prize winner will receive two VIP tickets to the 2021 Breeders' Cup World Championships at Del Mar and a $500 gift certificate from Christine A. Moore Millinery. The second-place finisher will receive a $250 Studio Savvy Salon gift basket and a $250 gift certificate from Christine A. Moore Millinery. The third prize is a $250 gift certificate to Christine A. Moore Millinery and fourth- prize is a $200 gift certificate to Studio Savvy Salon.

Daily safety measures that will be in effect throughout the meet include admittance to the facility strictly limited to essential personnel, daily on-site health screening for all personnel, including temperature checks, all personnel will be required to wear face coverings, jockeys and the starting gate crew will be required to wear additional personal protective equipment, proper social distancing will be required, additional handwashing and sanitizer stations have been installed throughout the Grandstand and stable area, enhanced janitorial services including daily disinfectant of all common areas, no congregation of people will be permitted in the saddling/paddock area, and the saddling/paddock area and starting gate will be disinfected after each race.    

More than 20 local restaurants, hotels and a casino have signed on to be part "Del Mar Live," offering many rea television screens to view the TVG telecasts of the races, Del Mar's signature drinks, the Del Margarita and Del Martini, and special sign-up betting propositions from TVG.