President of the Namibia Horse Racing Association (NHRA) Martinez de Waal yesterday confirmed that the eagerly-awaited MTC Independence Horseracing Cup has been put on hold for now, as the association is still weighing various options on how to safely stage the race in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The MTC Independence Cup was initially pencilled for 27 March at Rehoboth, but de Waal yesterday said due to the current Covid-19 rules and regulations that restrict more than 50 people at sporting events and social gatherings, it will be a bit difficult to hold the event as planned.
De Waal, however, assured that they are hard at work refining their calendar – and soon, a new date will be announced for the Independence Cup, adding that NHRA coming up with a new date will largely be influenced by all changes announced by government as far as Covid-19 rules and regulations are concerned.
“We have put the event on hold for now due to the current Covid-19 health and regulations, which only allows not more than 50 individuals gathering at a venue for no more than two hours. With the Covid-19 rules, there is nothing we can do about it, knowing the sport takes up the whole day in order to crown winners. So, to complete the event in two hours is just impossible,” he explained.
Despite putting the event on hold, he urged jockeys and horse owners to continue training and remain ready, as the revised dates will soon be announced.
“Although our event is on hold, I want to urge all horse owners and their jockeys to continue keeping their horses in shape for the event; a new date will be announced in due course, so we humbly ask every horse owner not to remain static.”