EMAIL KICKS OFF NEW EAGLE FARM CONTROVERSY

An email from the Australian Trainers Association, Queensland division to Racing Queensland bosses has been published in the Courier Mail and draws fresh concerns around the state of the Eagle Farm track

The issues with the Eagle Farm track have been well documented since it’s initial redevelopment work first took place in 2014 with the email outlining that conditions with the track have once again reached a breaking point and an “immediate concern”.

Frustration from trainers around the state of the track stems from a series of botched refurbishments and sub standard renovations. The email could subsequently lead the track being torn up for a third time to be relayed in just 6 years. 

The ATA’s Queensland Rep. Cameron Partington was responsible for the penning of the email after trainers were surveyed about the state of the track.

“There are many comments that are welfare-based, from the hardness of the track and the kickback causing injury,” the email says.

“There are many comments that are performance based, with horses just not handling the hardness below and the shifty surface on top.

“Very soon even more trainers will just stop running their horses there, out of pure concern for their welfare or for their ability to perform there.”

Comments from the survey were included in the email and many questioned the quality of the surface and its ability to sustain quality horse racing in the coming year. 

Racing Queensland have responded and agreed to a crisis meeting with the ATA with Chief Exec Brendan Parnel saying: 

“We’ve agreed to meet with our trainers and jockeys, along with the BRC, to work through their concerns and to provide them with our recommended program in the lead up to winter and beyond.”

The trainers haven’t been the only vocal critics of the Eagle Farm track with champion hoop and last years Cox Plate winning jockey Glenn Boss sending out a public warning that the track was not up to scratch. 

Boss cited what many have already seen in that the top layer is too soft and “chops out” but the layer underneath is hard.

With management of the track due to handover from the Brisbane Racing Club to Racing Queensland in April it will be interesting to see how talks progress in the coming weeks. 

It definitely seems a long time ago since we saw Rothfire win the JJ Atkins on a surface that now seems to be falling apart. 

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