Racing Victoria (RV) and the Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) have announced that tomorrow’s (Friday, 31 January) Ladbrokes Friday Night Lights – Lunar New Year race meeting at The Valley has been abandoned due to the forecast extreme heat.

The decision, made in consultation with the RV veterinary department, Bureau of Meteorology (BOM), Australian Trainers Association (ATA) and Victorian Jockeys Association (VJA), is in the best interests of horse and participant welfare.

The BOM has forecast that temperatures will reach 42 degrees in Melbourne tomorrow and would have remained above 40 for the scheduled commencement of the race meeting at 6.30pm.

RV Executive General Manager – Racing, Greg Carpenter, said: “While it is disappointing for all that The Valley’s Lunar New Year meeting will not proceed tomorrow night, the welfare of our horses and participants must be the priority and the decision to abandon the meeting upon veterinary advice is the appropriate one in the circumstances.

“The hottest part of the day is predicted to be late afternoon when many horses would be required to travel, and the temperature is currently predicted to be 41 degrees when the meeting is scheduled to start at 6.30pm.

“The race meeting will not be rescheduled; however we will review the program to determine whether any individual races are reprogrammed and make any announcements in due course.

“Whilst the meeting will not be rescheduled, the MVRC have advised that they will explore the opportunity of hosting their Lunar New Year celebrations at their next race meeting on Friday night, 7 February.”

There will be no Member or Public Bars, or any other member or public facilities open tomorrow night. Members and public booked in for dining will be contacted directly today to discuss their options.

The next scheduled race meeting at The Valley will be on Friday 7th February and the Club is looking at the potential to shift the Lunar New Year themed race meeting to this race meeting.