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Flamingo Abandoned – What A Pity.

Four races - jockeys say no more

The Flamingo Park racemeeting was abandoned on Monday after the running of the fourth race, following a protest by the jockeys at the condition of the track.

There was mixed sentiment from locals, with a general ‘rock and a hard place’ response.

“Why would the jockeys waste time and money if the problem wasn’t genuine? Who would want to force them to ride and be held accountable in the event of an accident? On the flipside, can we blame the track manager? Nobody is pumping money into Northern Cape racing. There are some issues with the track surface and with the water. There are challenges facing our racing,” was the general voice of opinion canvassed.

While the Pick 6 will be refunded, there will be a dividend payable on the Bipot and Place Accumulator.

Sad reality for punters is that many played fractional bets with a view on a nice dividend. Some landed up paying in. Sort of lose when you win. But cowboys don’t cry, apparently.

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12 comments on “Flamingo Abandoned – What A Pity.

  1. Luigi says:

    I attended this meeting and is dismayed at what happened today.Surely the track could have been cleared for racing before commencement of the meeting.

    My suggestion would be that this track only be used for grooms racing. Cancellation of meetings would be a thing of the past It clear that some of these jockeys are not hungry enough!

  2. Rian says:

    I’m just wondering what the bush meetings track looks like and do any riders protest , been waiting for years to be invited to one
    The powers that run racing have professionals that make accurate decision on going , tracks, etc
    Real Cowboys don’t cry they even take Horses to Hotels

  3. Aropax says:

    Cowboys dont cry till they fall and break something.. Its not the jockeys fault if the track not suitable for racing. As for not being hungry.. MANY ARE HUNGRY… Know the life of a jockey and that they travel far to just get rides to feed their families.. As many dont get enough in other centre’s… So they rely on flamingo… They wont just throw the towel in… No matter the critics opinion…. But sadly uts always the jockeys 🙄

  4. Gman says:

    Not sure how much a polytrack costs.But is that not the way forward to make money u have to invest.The sand track is so unpredictable in N cape.Today a horse wins by 15lenghts and the following week it loses by 30lenghts.Some ppl prefer not to play flamingo becoz of the results u get sometimes hense the small pools(p6),etc.

  5. Rian says:

    Hey Aropax, how much do Jockeys get paid now days per ride and do they get it as a monthly payment etc
    Are they paid the same at the different centres

  6. LG says:

    When I see jockeys and horses fall I fear the worst.
    Nobody reports on it and we have to wait for a while until we find out how they are.
    Look at some of our jockeys lost to the sport e.g. Anthony Delpech

    When a track is not suitable and jockeys protest, they are actually losing income.
    But it must be dangerous for them to go to that extent.
    Lets respect these people and the horses and their concerns.

  7. Jonathan Shaw says:

    Too many grandstand jockeys out there – they the ones risking their lives !!!

  8. Leon Lotz says:

    When the track was build the late Peter Miller did all the work.The old track was used as a base and compacted. The newly sand was put on top.The old track was saturated with water after rain always first round about the 1200 and the 1400 and meetings was abandoned then. The clay content on the old track was not even all around and is God given.This means the base is not even.The higher the clay content in soil, the slower water will infiltrate and those parts will be saturated or water logged first.There is no equipment to messure the water content of the base and the track has not got a build in drainage system like the ones you will find under irrigation in a simple farming operation. The track manager had to water the track last week in order for horses to train on.Keep in mind they had 70mm of rain the previous week which mean the base is in all likelihood still water logged and that part of the track wiil hold the water content because of the clay content,the fact that it is being compacted,the fact that the base has got a sand blanket ontop of the base .All factors insuring that the base can not dry out enough. The slightest over irrigation will cause patches on the track. Nobody can blame the track manager nor the jockeys.I have a masters degree in soil science and the basic norms of soil and water household in the soil is being ignored here.Nobody can blame the jockeys also. I drove 900km yesterday to race two horses. Only one ran.One of those things you need to take in your stride as a trainer. a Very difficult decision and position for the officials but the right one in the end.Let us remember what happened to jockey Gerrit Viljoen.
    the irrigation experts in soil physics thats available in SA can install probes to meassure the soil moisture content, put it on a computer system and help the track manager without blaming every one.Nobody is at fault.everybody is emotianal bacause everyone is loosing money yes. I did not see any of of the senior trainers like example Cliffy Miller or Bill Human inspecting with officials and jockeys yesterday.

  9. Johann Liebenberg says:

    I am the first to admit it was a disappointing end to the day and that a situation like this does not help the fact that Flamingo is in dire straights and fighting for survival NOR does it help the financial impact this abandonment had on all stake holders.

    But in saying that, this issue is not unique to Flamingo, fact is we have seen very little abandoned meetings due to track conditions at Flamingo. This occurrence are more frequently seen in the bigger centres which has way more financial assistance to ensure tracks stay in acceptable safe condition. For this you have to commend the people who are trying their best to get the track in racing shape with very little means at their disposal.

    Here is where my five cents gets thrown into the pool. We have been given this “life line” for the next twelve months, but I have seen almost no changes to the day-to-day operations that suggest that there is any noteworthy effort being made to turn this around and ensure that this track survives. In business if your current business model does not work and does not change with the frequently changing times you need to make an conscious effort to change it in order to stay relevant OR bare with the consequences which in all likelihood would be to bow out.

    What has really been done to take Flamingo Park to the next level since this announcement has been made to continue for another year? Has the decision to give it another year been a smoke screen to delay what would have been a PR disaster for Phumelela and the Racing Association at a vulnerable time last year?

    There is no industry without punters, owners, trainers, general stable workers, jockeys, exc.

    Time has come for owners and trainers to collaborate and get behind Flamingo Park. We have enough racing and business experience that are invested in this venue and want to see it have a future. If we want changes then let’s start speaking as one, let’s get the creative ideas flowing and force the change. Let’s build this business and ensure a mutually beneficial and stable future for ALL STAKEHOLDERS. We cannot sit and pull in different directions and in the end rely on one or two persons to fight the good fight.

    Maybe time that we create “Northern Cape Racing Association” as an independent body that focuses on Flamingo Park Racing and speaks as one to the “Powers-That-Be”

    #Keepflamingo #InNC4NC

  10. Peter Dembitzer says:

    Once again held to ransom by the bloated, fair weather jockeys in this country. Send them to the UK. They wouldn’t last a week and would come back far more tolerant and flexible.
    Why could they not have raced away from the rail as has been done previously in other centres?
    South African racing must be the most unmarketable in the world.
    Not a single meeting runs on time with lightning delays, groom strikes and shoe replacements the order of the day and any drop of rain it’s on to the dreaded ,polytrack
    Racing in this country mimics the state of the nation as a whole

  11. Beverley says:

    Sad to see folk here saying jockeys should have raced, regardless. Well, not in so many words, but read between the lines. As someone who follows racing in numerous countries and is an advocate for the banning of jumps racing in the UK, I am pleased when the track is considered dangerous and racing cancelled. That means no unnecessary horse/rider falls and potential life threatening injuries to the horses. I admire the NHRA who clearly put horse above all else, and ensure that they are protected. After all, you as the punter can choose to go and gamble, the jockey can choose to go and ride/not ride, but has ANYONE ever asked the horse if he would like to gallop at 65km/h on a wet track, going around bends and other horses, risking HIS neck for the pleasure of you, the gambler, sitting in the warm, dry lounge yelling him on? I bet, if the horse could speak, he’d tell you to stuff off and come back on a safer day then he will gallop his huge heart out for you. SHAME ON YOU ALL FOR SHOUTING AT THE JOCKEYS FOR PUTTING THE HORSE, and themselves, AHEAD OF YOUR GAMBLING PROBLEM.

  12. Mboni says:

    The racing track is unsafe for “jockeys”.. use it for grooms racing!.. the grooms in this country are forever the sacrificial lambs. Methinks that the grooms have no one to speak for them and soon they will be sent to the slaughter!
    Grooms, like jockeys are people; just as a reminder….

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