File photo: Zavaray Poonawalla with others with the Indian Derby Trophy
File photo: Zavaray Poonawalla with others with the Indian Derby Trophy

Mumbai: Three Grade 1 races including the Indian Derby are on cards as the horse racing is all set to return to the iconic Mahalaxmi Race Course from February 28.

According to sources, the Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC), Mumbai season which began in Pune November, last year will get back at the Mahalaxmi Racecourse come February 28.

Elaborating the big races that are scheduled to be held at the Mahalaxmi Race Course, it is understood that, the Indian Oaks Gr.1 and The Indian Derby also Gr.1 races will be run on March 7 and 28 March 2021 respectively while The Indian Turf Invitation Cup weekend races is likely to be held on April 18 this year.

Meanwhile, all measures have been taken to put in place as the racing comes back to the city, with the restrictions of Covid-19 easing further, and the Maharashtra government giving a go-ahead for the RWITC in their assignment. The club authorities have assured to accomodate 600 people at the venue to witness the live action of racing at this centre.

"We have been allowed relaxation in the number of people attending the races by the government. We are delighted that we have finally got the clearance from the authorities, said Zavaray Poonawalla, the chairperson of RWITC, while talking to a section of the media.

“Health and safety will be on top of the cards. All provisions of SOP will be maintained and no entry without the mask," said Poonawalla cautioned, while drawing the attention of the government guidelines which will be maintained with all respects.

Pune which has been hosting the Mumbai season will see their last race on February 21, after it was decided that the Mumbai racing will return back to the city.

Over 100 horses have already been moved to Mumbai for the first race to be held on February 28.

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Free Press Journal