(Source-NYRA Press Release)
With 70 % of adult New Yorkers now vaccinated against COVID-19, Gov. Cuomo on Tuesday announced the immediate removal of COVID-19 protocols and restrictions for nearly all activities and industries, including outdoor sports and entertainment venues.
Accordingly, NYRA will open all sections at Saratoga Race Course at 100 % capacity. The lifting of all COVID-19 protocols, including the requirement for fans to provide vaccination status, applies to all hospitality areas and venues within the facility, including the popular Saratoga backyard, 1863 Club and The Stretch. Season admission passes, which provide access to the backyard, will be available for purchase and use without the prior requirement that fans provide proof of vaccination status. As announced previously by Gov. Cuomo, all fans who show proof of vaccination via the New York State Excelsior Pass on Opening Day, Thursday, July 15, will receive free Grandstand general admission. Fans from outside New York State may redeem free admission by showing their Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card. Non-vaccinated individuals will be required to wear a facial covering during their day at Saratoga Race Course, in accordance with CDC guidance.
NYRA can also announce the re-opening of the Whitney Viewing Stand at the Oklahoma Training Track. Beginning Saturday, June 26, members of the public will be welcome to view morning training from 7-10 a.m. Prior to the opening of the summer meet on July 15, the Whitney Viewing Stand will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 7-10 a.m. with access available via Gate 21 on East Avenue. Licensed owners will no longer be required to show proof of vaccination when entering the Saratoga Race Course property. Beginning June 24, family members and guests will be permitted to accompany licensed owners to view morning training and visit the barn area.
The 40-day summer meet at historic Saratoga Race Course will feature 76 stakes worth $21.5 million in total purses highlighted by the 152nd renewal of the Grade 1, $1.25 million Runhappy Travers on August 28 and the Grade 1, $1 million Whitney on August 7, as the anchors of two of the most prestigious racing days in North America. Following the four-day opening weekend from Thursday, July 15 through Sunday, July 18, racing will be conducted five days a week, Wednesdays through Sundays, with the exception of the final week, when the meet will conclude on Labor Day.