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24th July 2024 12:56 pm

“A difference of opinion is what makes horse racing and missionaries."

On a Progress to Worcestershire – Which given the paucity of decent racing is probably a good thing

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I’m really not that interested in AW racing, and even less so after the outburst of Martin Cruddace this week. Cruddace, a name that smacks of Nominative Determinism, runs Arena Racing, and this week, he accused figures in racing who continually called for greater transparency on racecourses’ media rights income as being “economically illiterate” and that he would not engage with “people who leave rational thought at the door and are not prepared to change their view no matter what you say”. He ungraciously conceded that racecourse costs could be better explained to participants but added: “What I am not ever going to allow is for a trainer or an owner to tell this company how it should be run and what it should spend money on.”

Cruddace also claimed that an organised boycott by owners or trainers would be contrary to the Competition Act 1998 and said anyone who did boycott a racecourse risked an injunction and fines by the Competition and Markets Authority of up to ten per cent of their total revenue. He also suggested that anyone who announced they did not intend to enter their horse in a particular race at a particular racecourse for a particular reason would also be acting illegally because they would be inviting others to join their boycott. According to The Racing Post, this appears to tally with legal advice about collective action the NTF is understood to have sent to its members recently but before the Cruddace interview appeared.

In brief, trainers are not allowed to strike. If the NTF ever sets up a legal fighting fund to test that statement, I’m happy to throw in a tenner or two. Cruddace’s attitude explains everything wrong with racing. Owners are simply there to provide Arena with an income and otherwise shut up.

I wish I’d shut up yesterday as we drew a blank, but in the spirit of economic illiteracy, here are one or two suggestions for today.

12:50 LINGFIELD

FIRE DEMON 5 pts Win

2:00 LINGFIELD

PLANATADREAM 3 pts e/w

2:35 LINGFIELD

SILKY WILKIE – ZARZYNI Dutch Win 7 pts

3:45 LINGFIELD

GORDON GREY 3 pts e/w – SMART CHAMPION 2 pts e/w 

5:30 WOLVERHAMPTON

ROMAN CROWN 4 pts double with FIRE DEMON

3:45 NAVAN

HUTCHIE 4 pts e/w

4:15 NAVAN

C’EST TA CHANCE massively overpriced 8 pts Lay

TRIM CASTLE 4 pts Win 

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