Tourism Minister is open to allowing more people into The Everest and is consulting authorities to ensure it can be done in a COVID-safe way.
Tourism Minister is open to allowing more people into The Everest and is consulting authorities to ensure it can be done in a COVID-safe way.

Countdown to Everest: Minister considers boosting crowd

It's hoped more racegoers will be able to attend the world's richest race on turf, with the state government leaving the door open to increasing the COVID capacity of Randwick Racecourse for The Everest next Saturday.

The so-called Major Events task-force, spearheaded by Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres, is working through plans to get more people trackside for the biggest event on Sydney's racing calendar.

NSW Health, Police, and other government agencies are currently evaluating a number of different scenarios put forward by the Australian Turf Club to increase capacity.

Last year 43,000 packed into Randwick to watch The Everest, but the one person per four square metre rule would see crowds limited to only 5,000.

 

Brianna Roberts, Kelly Toms, Jade Spooner and Zara Spooner at The Everest race day held at the Royal Randwick Racecourse. Picture: Christian Gilles
Brianna Roberts, Kelly Toms, Jade Spooner and Zara Spooner at The Everest race day held at the Royal Randwick Racecourse. Picture: Christian Gilles

 

Crowds at The Everest at the Royal Randwick Racecourse. Picture: Christian Gilles
Crowds at The Everest at the Royal Randwick Racecourse. Picture: Christian Gilles

"The events task-force has successfully worked with venue operators and NSW Health to increase capacities for corporate events, stadiums and theatres and we are now evaluating options for major spring race days," Mr Ayres told The Daily Telegraph.

"I know there is a lot of enthusiasm for spring racing but considered and incremental steps is what has allowed us to handle the pandemic well and we should stick with a winning formula," he said

The Minister said the government would work to increase capacity if it can be done in a COVID safe way.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the state government wants upcoming major events to have "the highest capacity as possible in a COVID safe way".

Originally published as Countdown to Everest: Minister considers boosting crowd numbers

Glen Boss riding Yes Yes Yes celebrates as he returns to scale after winning The Everest in 2019. Picture: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images
Glen Boss riding Yes Yes Yes celebrates as he returns to scale after winning The Everest in 2019. Picture: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images


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