In response to the incident that occurred at Harold Crawford’s yard at the Milnerton Training Centre on Monday, 1 April 2019, Phumelela’s Racing Executive Patrick Davis has been investigating the matter and, as promised, contacted the Sporting Post with feedback on Tuesday, 2 April.
“Firstly, we’d like to say that we are appalled by the cowardly and callous attack and our sympathies are with the Crawfords and the connections of the affected horses,” said Patrick.
“At this stage we don’t know who the guilty party or parties might be, but surmise it might be a disgruntled ex employee,” he continued.
“We would like to clarify all grooms carry access cards and Phumelela have a policy whereby any groom reported as being dismissed by a trainer has their access card removed and is escorted off the training facility premises within 72 hours.”
“We have confirmed with our security team that this procedure was followed in the case of the groom dismissed by the Crawford yard some months ago. Furthermore, they have confirmed that there are no individuals currently living at the Milnerton premises who are not entitled to be there,” he added.
Patrick, who only resumed his role at Phumelela on Monday morning, acknowledged that security has been an on-going challenge and that it is one of the many issues he intends to tackle during his tenure.
“The well-being of all the horses and people that use our facilities is of paramount importance to us. We are looking at ways to address the access and security arrangements and trying to do better. This was a horrendous incident and again, our thoughts go out to everyone affected,” he added in closing.