The U.S. Equestrian Federation has announced that beginning May 3, licensees of USEF competitions are permitted to welcome a limited number of spectators back to their competitions.
Dr. Mark Hart, USEF Chief Medical Officer stated, “In the spirit of moving our sport forward and recognizing the ever-changing dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic resulting from the increasing number of distributed vaccines, we are working to finalize the specific protocols related to a measured return of spectator attendance. We continue to collaborate with our USEF stakeholders and public health officials and plan to distribute these new measures along with any other pertinent updates in the USEF COVID-19 Action Plan next Tuesday, April 20, 2021.”
Beginning May 3, spectators will be allowed on competition grounds under the following capacity restrictions:
- Outdoor venues: A maximum of 40% of the ticketed spectator capacity for competitions that operate with a ticketed gate, OR a maximum of 400 spectators for competitions that do not ticket spectators, whichever is greater.
- Indoor venues: A maximum of 30% of the ticketed spectator capacity for competitions that operate with a ticketed gate, OR a maximum of 300 spectators for competitions that do not ticket spectators, whichever is greater.
- For venues that consist of both outdoor and indoor components, the above capacity restrictions apply accordingly.
Spectators must comply with all applicable requirements of the USEF Action Plan, including but not limited to wearing face masks/face coverings, social distancing and frequent hand washing. The capacity numbers included above are the maximum permitted at a USEF competition each day. Because of the requirement to socially distance, some venues or situations might not allow organizers to accommodate the maximum allowable number of spectators.
Additionally, USEF has expanded the definition of sponsors to include individual persons or business entities that have an agreement in place with the competition to provide goods, services, or financial support integral to the sustainability of a competition. Sponsors, participants, competition staff, support personnel, volunteers and service providers are not included in the spectator capacity numbers.
It is critical that competition organizers and participants continue to follow all governmental and health authority guidance and restrictions, which if more restrictive, supersede USEF’s requirements.
“We will continue to carefully monitor conditions and regularly consult with health authorities with the goal of being able to provide additional updates in the coming weeks and months that will further ease restrictions without endangering the health and safety of competitors,” said Dr. Hart.