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Kimberley’s Killing Fields – A Sombre Reality?

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Multiple Northern Cape Champion trainer Cliffie Miller has reacted with ‘massive disappointment and desperate concern’ to the news of the likely closure of a racecourse that has been his, and many others’ home for many decades.

The charismatic Miller says that he is viewing the situation as holistically as he reasonably can, given his emotional attachment to, and long history in the Diamond City.

Cliffie Miller – a lifetime in Northern Cape

“The sad reality is that, while there has been a lot of concern, nobody has sat down with us and said ‘let’s work out a plan’. I am grateful to Gold Circle and their board for stepping in to help. But we need to save this place for longer than six months and for more than just the rationale of rands and cents,” he pleaded,  as he spoke emotionally of the community and the animals that would be the major collateral damage.

“Myself and Heather (Reddie) can pack up and move to Ashburton and carry on there. But what about the the staff? We cannot uproot these people who have been here for generations. Their families and children will be the real victims. And let’s not even talk about the horses or the multitude of dogs and cats. We are taking a fabric and ripping it into shreds. We are creating killing fields. Just because something went wrong somewhere and somebody lost interest in a centre that fell into a financial hole? We never really had a chance to get involved and come up with a plan. And now a Business Rescue Practitioner is handed the gun and told to decide whether to pull the trigger?”

An emotional Miller said that a lean and meanly run Flamingo Park could surely work as a component of SA racing.

“We are the only sand track. Not all horses are turf and polytrack winners. We serve an integral role in the food chain, that includes breeders, owners and ordinary people who rely on us for a job that puts bread on the table. I pray somebody sees the insanity, before it’s too late.”

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10 comments on “Kimberley’s Killing Fields – A Sombre Reality?

  1. Johann Liebenberg says:

    Well said Mr Miller. Let’s get behind Flamingo and vote!!!

  2. Emildean Martin says:

    Yes. I agree. Why should Kimberley close .all the big centres are not racing .

  3. Trevor Houston Francis says:

    Yes I agree to save Kimberly racing

  4. Oscar says:

    Hopefully Kimberley will never close.
    As long as the Oppenheimers are around
    They wlll make sure Flamingo Park survives
    After all they have strong strings attached to it.

  5. Maryke says:

    Thank you Cliffie ! Flamingo park can’t just close down .. thank you for standing up for all of us (trainers , owners , grooms but most off all the horses) who loves the LAST sand track in the country!!! Northern cape (hopefully going to level 3) have low covid positives , so why can’t we race behind close doors !!!

  6. Pier Dempers says:

    Piet Dempers

    Thank you Cliffie Flamingo Park should be saved racing in SA needs us defenitevly yes and we must save The Horses and the people depending on them stand up and vote Animal and Horseracing lovers worldwide!!!

  7. bob kistnasamy says:

    I agree about the shining light (The Oppenheimers). Kimberley is steeped in Oppenheimer history and they will not let the “racing side” down in the Diamond City. The Oppenheimers have singlehandedly been making huge contributions to the SA racing industry over the decades and we shall see their generosity foe an even longer period. Racing is synonymous with the Oppenheimer family.

  8. Racing Fever says:

    This centre offers a second breath so to speak to horses and owners alike.
    When you consider this it makes much sense to keep it going.

  9. Oscar says:

    Closing Flamingo Park is definitely not an option. In a recent poll Clairwood Park was voted one of the best Racecourse in S. Africa.
    Today the public is regretting why they did not do enough to restrict the sale of Clairwood Park.
    Flamingo is like an unpolished diamond which can easily become the most beautiful RACECOURSE in S.Africa.
    Let us stand together with the people of Kimberley and prevent the closure of this
    Diamond Racecourse at all cost.
    We must Never allow a repeat of the Clairwood Park debacle.

  10. Oscar says:

    To all those people who think that Flamingo Park is a dying horse.
    Why don’t you’ll hand over the reigns to
    Hollywood Bets.
    I am sure they will be glad and eager to take up the challenge.
    Since they are an international organisation
    now I am confident they will make Flamingo Park Hollywood one of the best Racecourse not only in S.Africa but in the world.
    Please hand over the unpolished Diamond
    to Hollywood and let them bring out the glitter.

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