The Madras Race Club, under the dynamic leadership of M A M R Muthiah is making big strides. The enthusiasm of the chairman is reflected in the streamlining of administration and ramping up of facilities. The other day a new administrative block was inaugurated. The club has already released the important racing dates to alert outstation participants. The season will commence on November 6. There is hope despite the pandemic having ravaged Chennai.
The turf club will be constructing about 60 RCC roofed stables. There are many projects being planned, with the chairman keen on making Chennai regaining its old glory. Madras Race Club has the financial resources to sustain the sport. Reverse migration from Bangalore is a possibility if BTC does not wake up from its destructive mindset.
Bangalore Turf Club and Mysore Race Club benefitted immensely when racing closed at Chennai due to the government banning racing. Many of the trainers, racehorse owners, and horses shifted to Bangalore which helped racing to prosper. Mysore Race Club also benefitted with two mini-seasons added to either side of its main season to accommodate the additional rush. Mysore Race Club has since become an independent turf authority.
The subsequent revival at Chennai did not inspire confidence as it became a one-man show. With BTC deteriorating fast thanks to its disrespect of stakeholders, Madras Race Club could benefit as a result thanks to the winds of change with the new team at the helm. While BTCV is slipping on the track, Madras Race Club is being steered with no hiccups.
The Bangalore Turf Club is facing the threat of eviction as the final hearing of its matter about the ownership of the land will come up in Supreme Court before long. Bangalore could lose its premier status if there are no efforts to resume racing at the earliest.
Madras Race Club has one of the best well-planned racecourses in the country. Chennai racing in the last two seasons has been very competitive and it is being well patronized.
The Bangalore trainers are planning to race their wards in a big way in the races in which outstations horses are permitted to participate. The quality of racing will thus get a boost with the additional participation of horses from other centres like Pune and Hyderabad.
There is no clarity as to when racing can resume in most centres in the country. RWITC is very keen on starting racing but the conditions there are not permitting it. The coronavirus is on the rampage and the club has been unable to get permission to start racing at Pune though the club had readied everything. Preparations have been in full swing with regular workouts in the morning but their plight can be comparable to that of a bride without a bridegroom. The club is yet to get clearance for online betting and there is no indication when the permission would be forthcoming.
The Madras Race Club has been working very cohesively. The elections to fill up the vacancies in the Managing Committee have also been conducted, with M A M R Muthiah, Kaliaperumal, R M Ramaswami getting re-elected unopposed. The new entrant in the committee is M Senthilnathan. A C Muthiah did not seek re-election. The Annual General Body Meeting will be held on September 29.
The only other race club to indicate a possible start to racing it is the Royal Calcutta Turf Club which has said that it hopes to start its season from October 31. The club which was in the throes of severe financial crunch has reportedly raised reasonable money by selling off one of its properties. There is optimism that things improve in the coming months.
There is no word from Hyderabad though there could be clarity after its Annual General Body Meeting and elections are gone through this Friday.
On the other hand, the club which continues to fumble is the Bangalore Turf Club. The club has the government`s permission to run racing and has also got the green signal to conduct an app-based betting on its totalizator system. Since the government gave a special sanction for this app-based betting on the existing system of betting operation, one is not sure whether there was any requirement for any special resolution to be passed at the EGM as the character of betting remained the same. Physical betting on the tote was sought to be enhanced with the app supported betting as well.
Since the club went for the clearance from the general body, they have to wait till such time they are able to get the resolution passed. The Managing Committee which is known to complicate things went for an ill-advised postal ballot voting by clubbing about 40 odd resolutions and amendments to the Articles of Association instead of restricting the EGM through the postal ballot to just getting the clearance for what is being dubbed as online betting?
All the resolutions have since been defeated and one is not sure whether the club will go ahead with its expected start of the season on November 1 or they will wait till such time online betting is approved by the general body. The Managing Committee is hopelessly divided and the focus is not on the early resumption of racing but on settling scores. Each of the committee members seems to have an agenda which unfortunately is not about resuming racing.