All individuals attending race meetings behind closed doors will be required to wear a face covering at all times in a tightening of the sport’s Covid-19 protocols.

The change means that in all indoor and outdoor areas of the green zone and owner zone from the point of arrival and throughout the duration of their time on course, an individual must wear a face covering until they have departed the course.

Individuals who are exempt from wearing a face covering due to physical or mental health conditions or because they have a disability may now be required to provide verification that this is the case from a healthcare professional.

Jockeys can continue to pull down their face covering prior to the start of a race and for its duration but must raise the covering once a race has finished before they enter the horse walk.

Those working in the broadcast media do not have to wear a face covering when broadcasting live to camera or in live interviews along with pre-recorded interviews but must adhere to strict social distancing measures.

Dr Jerry Hill, the British Horseracing Authority’s Chief Medical Adviser explained the decision and said: “Our behind closed doors model and the vigilance of our participants and officials has enabled racing to return safely, with no evidence of transmission of Covid-19 on the racecourse.

“Even in the period since resumption, there has been a growing scientific consensus that, when used correctly, face coverings can help to reduce the spread of coronavirus droplets.

“They provide an additional layer of infection control which, used alongside other essential measures like frequent handwashing and strict social distancing, can help racing reduce our risk of transmission and safeguard our industry from the virus.

“With cases rising across the country and more areas subject to local lockdowns and restrictions, we believe that making face coverings compulsory for all attendees – except, of course, where exemptions apply – is a sensible and necessary precaution to bolster our existing protocols and help keep everyone safe.”