WEST Berks trainer Nicky Henderson’s yard is being tested by vets for traces of equine flu which has forced the abandonment of all racing until next Wednesday.

Tomorrow’s Betfair Super Saturday meeting at Newbury Racecourse is among a long list of fixtures to have been called off.

Experts fear they could have an outbreak on their hands if racing continued and large numbers of horses from all over the country were kept in close proximity.

Fixtures at Chelmsford, Doncaster, Ffos Las and Huntingdon yesterday were cancelled by the British Horceracing Authority after three vaccinated horses belonging to Donald McCain tested positive for the disease.

The Cheshire-based trainer confirmed horses from his infected yard had raced on Wednesday, thus exposing others to the dangers.

Henderson now faces an anxious wait while a thorough examination of around 150 of his horses at his Seven Barrows yard near Lambourn takes place today.

"We are involved because we had runners at Ludlow yesterday,” explained Henderson. "The two horses that ran (at Ludlow) yesterday were taken out of the yard straight away at 7am this morning well away from Seven Barrows and are isolated on their own away from everyone else.

"We've had to take serious measures to ensure all of our horses are healthy so I have a team of six vets coming to take nasal swabs from every single horse in the yard and once completed, we will transport the swabs to Newmarket ourselves, so they will be in the lab as soon as is humanely possible which means we should get the results extremely promptly.

"I have had long discussions with our excellent team of vets and been advised to wait 48 hours from the time the first horse was diagnosed to get a true reading, which is why we can't do it today."

Henderson’s yards includes some big names on the National Hunt circuit such as reigning Champion Chase star Altior and dual Champion Hurdle winner.

He added: "The likes of Altior, Buveur D'Air, Might Bite, Top Notch, Birchdale all live pretty much next door to each other and are perfectly all right, but they will all get swabbed like the rest of the squad.

"They are going to test over 1,000 horses so we've got to accept it will take some time before we know the results but things like this mustn't be rushed so we just have to sit and wait until advised what the next step will be."

Racing had been due to take place at Bangor, Kempton Park, Newcastle and Southwell today.

Tomorrow’s meetings at Newbury, Lingfield, Uttoxeter, Warwick and Wolverhampton have been cancelled along with Sunday’s fixtures at Exeter, Musselburgh and Southwell.

Newbury’s meeting tomorrow was due to see Colin Tizzard’s 2018 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Native River go in search of a third successive victory in the Grade Two Betfair Denman Chase.

Newbury Racecourse confirmed all pre-paid tickets for tomorrow’s meeting will be refunded within 14 days.