|Cape Racing is forging ahead and set for a spectacular season – but it wasn’t always like that.|
Not so long ago racing in the Cape was in the doldrums, and the outlook seemed gloomy. However, structural changes, enthusiastic and determined new people, and a great leap forward in public relations, have altered that. I must admit to feeling slightly jealous before my better nature prevailed and I became happy for them.
Of course, I cannot claim to have moved entirely into Pollyanna mode. Surely it is long past time racing in Zimbabwe got a few breaks. Miraculously, we are still racing because we have some enthusiastic and determined people – we just need more of them.
The current Mashonaland Turf Club Board may feel that, undeservedly, they collect more brickbats than bouquets. Unfortunately, that’s racing. Some of us have been giving unsolicited but excellent advice to the MTC for 30 to 40 years, which won’t change soon. After all, talking about racing is part of the fun, but it would be unfortunate if at this stage the old-timers and ‘newbies’ split into groups of ‘Us’ and ‘Them’.
Like everything, racing evolves. Tradition and innovative ideas are equally important. Fortunately, in Zimbabwe there are dedicated racing people of all ages working tirelessly, for nothing, to keep the show on the road. We need more of them.
And, of course, it goes without saying that we need more owners. Racing clubs and syndicates lessen the financial burden of keeping a racehorse and are gaining popularity worldwide. Without owners, there can be no racing and those that continue to race their horses, despite reduced stakes, deserve respect and gratitude.
Perhaps you used to race but for various reasons bowed out. It’s never too late to return and help make next year better!