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Scot Government’s Sports Aid

Horseracing is amongst beneficiaries

Five professional sports are to share £2.55m of support from the Scottish government to help combat losses incurred during Covid-19 restrictions.

Football, which has the most clubs affected by the recent fan limits, is the biggest beneficiary with £1.79m.

Ice hockey is entitled to £350,000, while horse racing receives £265,000, rugby gets £125,000 and basketball claims £20,000.

The funding comes from the £5m announced for sport on January 5.

It will cover up to 75% of losses sustained after the Omicron outbreak led to outdoor attendances being capped at 500 from 26 December – a limit which ends on Monday – with indoor sports restricted to 200 seated fans.

The traditional Boxing Day Scottish Premiership football fixtures and horse racing at Musselburgh on New Year’s Day were among the events affected.

Sports minister Maree Todd said many clubs suffered “real hardships” as a result of the restrictions.

“This funding will help to ensure clubs are able to bridge the gap in revenue as spectators return safely to sports events in larger numbers when these restrictions are eased next week,” she added.

“This government has pledged to provide funding to support organisations affected by the necessary measures to keep us all safe and these allocations show we are doing this.”

Further funding from the £5m may be allocated should additional restrictions have significant financial impacts.

The amount allocated to each football club is to be finalised by the Scottish FA and SPFL after this weekend’s lower-league fixtures, which are included in the restrictions. The Premiership returns from its winter break on Monday with Celtic v Hibernian.

Ice hockey, which has three professional clubs in Glasgow, Dundee and Fife, and basketball clubs affected will receive their funding directly from sportscotland. The other sports will see the funding provided to governing bodies who will distribute it to members.


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