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Shock:Operator Apologises

A case of Clairwood's current affairs

Gold Circle's Graeme Hawkins.

Gold Circle’s Graeme Hawkins.

The start of Race 9 at Clairwood on Sunday (15 June 2014) was delayed as a result of an electrical problem which caused current to run through the starting gates, thereby shocking the horses, riders and handlers.

In a press release issued on Thursday 19 June, Gold Circle clarified the issue.

The Dennis Bosch trained Your Worship, with MJ Byleveld on board, was the worst affected and had to be scratched.


Following a subsequent inspection of the starting gates it was discovered that a cable linking the start-bell to the gates was damaged between races 8 and 9. After disconnecting the damaged cable a manual start for races 9 and 10 was successfully effected without further incident.


“The fault has now been rectified and no further problems are expected,” said Gold Circle Racing Executive Graeme Hawkins. “The starting gates were recently imported from Australia and are of the highest quality.  But clearly we were caught off guard by the damaged cable and we apologise unreservedly for the incident which we view in a very serious light,” he added

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4 comments on “Shock:Operator Apologises

  1. Brad says:

    Funny a trainer, jockey or owner makes a mistake , they have to pay !!!!!! everyone else just says a simple sorry ! These horses in question could suffer huge set backs from this and some might never be the same again. The fact that they cost some poor owner money and not the operators makes it easy to say a simple, I am sorry. I believe they should be fined and if there are damages due to the owners they must PAY ! Sorry not good enough I’m afraid !

  2. tinus says:

    Not the first time that this happens. There is a huge safety risk because of the electrical component, thus calling for certain safety precautions to be taken BEFORE each race, to mitigate the risk. This should be very easy to implement. Just do it!

  3. Edweena says:

    very bad look at what happened in England where horses died this is not good enough. some of the horses what were shocked might now become a problem in the starting gate

  4. Ruby says:

    I think there was a very promising horse called Editor, that had a misfortune at the starting stalls and was never the same again. He was sold for 30k and never won again if memory serves me right. So where the horse suffers we will never know the implication there off, so a simple sorry does not cut it.
    On the other side if there was any fatalities, then what would have been the case. Proper safety protocol has not been adhered to.
    Sorry Mr Hawkins, your apology does not work for me

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