The Jamaica Racing Commission – Pin the Tail on the Dog

Who is running the Jamaica Racing Commission? Is this a classic case of the tail wagging the dog?

For some time, Your Humble Scribe has been concerned about the methodology and content attached to and included in the Commission’s Training Programme for Assistant Trainers. The objective of this Programme is to have in place a structured path to a Trainer’s Licence but the path has been rocky and fraught with danger. An Assistant Trainer must be working in that capacity for 4 years (the period of most College first degrees) before becoming eligible for entry into the Trainers’ Training Programme. Then, after a six months course in Training 101 conducted by the JRC’s Chief Vet, those who are successful in the written exam at the end of this Course will graduate to become fully-fledged Trainers. But the entire Programme is a one man band. The Chief Vet decides, unilaterally and without supervision not any kind, who he will admit to the Course. Then he decides the content of the Course and the exam. And, of course, there is no appeal process for “failed” candidates. And it is instructive to note, as an aside, that the Commission took the incredible decision some years ago to permit its Chief Vet, in addition to his monitoring and regulatory duties, to conduct a private practice at the race track. So, as it turns out, the entrants to the Trainers Training Programme are all potential customers of his in that private practice.

Race track rumour now has it that the 2008/09 Training Programme has been cancelled by the Commission months after the classes started. Why? Does this action have anything to do with the fact that several promising young Assistant Trainers who qualified for entry were unfairly prevented from entering the Programme by the Chief Vet? These unfairly and unilaterally excluded Assistant Trainers took the bold and unusual step of lodging formal complaints with the Commission and were promised a supplemental Programme would begin in February of this year specifically for them. Why did this supplemental Programme not begin? Who “colt de game”?

And, why on Earth would the solution to the problem be to make all the Youngsters in both Programmes suffer another two years or so until the next Programme starts? Is there no accountability for actions anymore? Or are some people untouchable? Does no one care that the future lifeblood of the industry is being driven away? Or does that matter?

And, what about Naomi?

Good Luck!


2 Responses to “The Jamaica Racing Commission – Pin the Tail on the Dog”

  1. Paul Wright Says:

    This is why I always seem to get iinto trouble. As it is well known the Racing Commission “searches” all media for any hint of a critisicsm and then spends the rest of its time plotting revenge. I believe that the public must be made aware of this patent injustice. This cancellation is to punish those who protested. Nothing less. That the Commission has gone along with the personal vendetta opf a member of staff only seems to underline the fac t that the Leadership is nonexistent and MUST be removed.

  2. Howard Hamilton Says:

    JRC needs a total restructuring in light of changing circumstaces of the racing industry. They must be a self sufficient cost centre providing services that are needed and charging for these services. Why should trainers not cover the cost of there training? The recent exercise where stake holders refused to accept increased fees and fines was a show of weakness and not in keeping with the authority which a commission should have over an industry that HAS to be proper,ly regulated.
    They have created a monster in Vin Edwards — his recent outburst is indicative of the error created when his coisin took him off the warned off list. The only way to hobble him is to remove him from the scene. His continued presence will forever be a dtereant to the forward progress of the industry.
    On the subject of Vets, bear in mind that there are in excess of 2000 horses needing Vet care and only 4 Equine Vets are available.

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