Weekend races cancelled at Bangalore Turf Club

With the dispute over wages between the syces — who had adopted a violent approach on Wednesday — and the Bangalore Turf Club management yet to reach an amicable solution, the stewards have been forced to cancel the races scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the BTC.

However, the P Dayanand Pai and P Satish Pai Bangalore Winter Million (Grade III) will be held at a later date. “Due to reasons beyond control, Friday’s and Saturday’s races have been cancelled with the exception of P Dayanand Pai and P Satish Pai Bangalore Winter Million (Grade III). The revised date of running this race will be notified shortly,” said a BTC release.

But the inter-venue betting at the BTC as well as races at the Mysore Race Club will be held as per schedule. “Inter-venue betting on Kolkata races will be held at the BTC on Saturday,” the release added.

The syces had refused to sign an agreement on Wednesday and manhandled some of the owners which led to the chaotic scenes at the race course.

The stable hands had agreed to accept the terms and an Memorandum of Understanding was set to be signed on Wednesday when things took a turn for the worse. Syces coming up with new demands put the entire process in jeopardy and the subsequent violence has left a bitter taste.

The situation has cast a cloud over the racing fixtures in Bangalore with the BTC officials uncertain when action could resume.

The venue is to host the prestigeous Indian Turf Invitation Cup next month and the issue, if it prolongs, could have a negative impact on the running of the event.

“First the syces have to return for the racing to resume. Many of their leaders are under police custody, we are waiting for their return. Then only we can think of resuming the races,” said BTC chairman Srinivasa Gowda.

Meanwhile, four horse owners who were injured in the attack on Wednesday, Gopi Naidu (40), Arun Kumar (43), Chethan Kumar (23) and Vinod (23), were taken to Mallige hospital. 

Of the four, three were treated as out patients while Naidu was admitted in the hospital as he had suffered a cut injury on his chin. He was discharged on Thursday.

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