Epsom’s annual open day for horse racing enthusiasts returned this week, albeit via a new virtual format.

Racing Welfare hosted this year’s event, sponsored by the Racehorse Owners Association, which was broadcast live over the internet and social media on the bank holiday Monday (August 31).

The free to access online event replaced the usual setup after it was cancelled due to coronavirus precautions.

The day featured a series of video tours emulating the visitor’s perspective making viewers feel like they were really at the yard.

Jim Boyle, racehorse trainer at South Hatch Stables, said ahead of the event: “Whilst it’s incredibly disappointing not to be welcoming visitors for the annual Epsom Open Day, we’re delighted to be able to join our fellow trainers in a Virtual Epsom Open Day.

“We’re very grateful to Racing Welfare and local councillor Steven McCormick for facilitating this, and hope that members of the public find the virtual tours an enjoyable and informative replacement during these difficult times.”

Running alongside the Virtual Open Day was a national online auction, which went live on August 27 and is due to continue until 24th September.

The lots on offer include a private tour of the National Stud in Newmarket complete with an overnight stay at the historic Jockey Club Rooms, and a 2021 share in a racehorse with the Hot to Trot syndicate.

Funds raised will go towards Racing Welfare’s Emergency Appeal, donations to the appeal can be made here: justgiving.com/RWEmergencyAppeal.

Dawn Goodfellow, Chief Executive of Racing Welfare, said: “We are thrilled that, despite being unable to hold the Epsom Open Day in its usual format this year, we are still able to showcase this fantastic racing centre.

“It is an excellent opportunity to promote the home of the Derby to a much wider audience, I hope everyone enjoys the online offering with interest.”

More information can be found at racingwelfare.co.uk/epsomopenday