India’s Derby Bangalore to go ahead

Racing is a truly international sport. We can often read about fixtures in France, America, Australia, Dubai and Japan, but what about the rest of the world? A few brave jockeys are travelling to events in countries where racing, though undoubtedly popular, is rather less well known about across here.

Last Sunday Mark Dwyer and Irish jockey Chris Hayes in India's Derby Bangalore, which with prize money of 23.5 million rupees (around £325,000), would have been India's richest ever race. However, industrial action by stable staff meant the race could not go ahead as planned. The strike concerned the long running failure of trainers to implement the Provident Fund, a scheme to ensure workers build up a pension and are insured against injury. Strike action has often been threatened in the past, but between the trainers who employ the stable staff, and the Bangalore Turf Club (BTC), responsible for the management of racing, have been able to fend it off.

Talks earlier this week, which as well as trainers, the BTC and union leaders, included representatives of the police, have led to a resolution of the problem, and the Derby Bangalore will now go ahead this Sunday, just a week late.

Yesterday, the Valeifendi circuit in Istanbul, Turkey, hosted the annual International Jockeys Challenge, in which a five man invitation team take on top local riders. The Challenge, which features races on both turf and polytrack, has attracted many top jockeys over the years, including Kieren Fallon and Pat Smullen in last year's visitors. The international team this year includes Johnny Murtagh and Neil Callan, along with Irish Derby winning rider Colm O'Donaghue, Frenchman Olivier Peslier and champion jockey from Germany Eduardo Pedroza. Riding in Turkey isn't something new for Callan, as last year he rode the Michael Jarvis trained Pressing to victory in the Group 2 Topkapi Trophy.

Topkapi.... now that was a film worth watching!

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1 reply
  1. Matt Bisogno says:

    Excellent stuff – seems we’re not the only country hamstrung by strike action at the moment!


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