Andy O’Connor, former chairman of the NHA, will lead a commission mandated to review the track management systems for Phumelela.
This follows Phumelela Group CEO John Stuart’s announcement last week of a review in light of the fact that the meeting held on Thursday 4 October on the Vaal Classic track was called off owing to an “uneven and inconsistent track” as well as other recent track inconsistencies.
According to Stuart, O’Connor’s independence and integrity is above reproach, making him the perfect candidate to lead a team tasked with making recommendations to Phumelela.
Part of O’Connor’s mandate will be to investigate current track management processes and the ways in which they could and should be improved, to draw up Standard Operational Procedures regarding the implementation of improved track management processes, and to ensure the alignment of the maintenance of training and racing tracks, with the feature race calendar at the various racing courses.
Apart from serving as chairman of the NHA, O’Connor also has a five-year stint as director on the Racing Association on his CV.
As far as the Vaal course is concerned, Clyde Basel, Racing Executive for Phumelela, yesterday invited stakeholders to inspect the course ahead of this weekend’s Grand Heritage.
The inspection was to be held late afternoon.
“We will walk the course from around the 2000m mark to the winning post to ensure that it is track ready,” said Basel.
“We will give feedback after completion of the track inspection.”