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The Chairman of the Victorian Thoroughbred Racehorse Owners Association (TROA), Jonathan Munz, today slammed the proposed reductions of in excess of $1 Million by the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) to prizemoney for 30 Flemington Group and listed races next season.

Mr Munz was highly critical of the VRC’s move which was initiated without consulting owners, trainers and jockeys and without any publicity:

“If the VRC cut prizemoney for Group and listed races it will be a major backwards step for the VRC and for Racing in this state. It sends the wrong message and undermines all the efforts made to improve and promote racing”.

“It directly undermines racing participants such as owners, trainers, jockeys and breeders and the thousands of people directly and indirectly employed in the Industry. These sorts of attitudes and actions feed into a slippery slide of reduced participation, reduced betting turnover and reduced industry revenue. We can see what happens when prizemoney levels are cut or fall behind, with the depressed industries in both South Australia and New Zealand being examples”.

“The Industry should not be paying for the VRC’S failure to properly manage its overhead structure which is widely regarded as containing way too much unnecessary fat and waste. To give the VRC credit, it is now “talking the talk” about starting to belatedly address these issues, but it needs to be a bit more realistic about cutting unnecessary costs and looking at revenue enhancements. I believe that this can be done without whacking owners, trainers and jockeys and without increasing fees for VRC members. Hopefully the new CEO will understand this”.