TRAINERS and members of the grooms’ association met at Randjesfontein on Thursday and reached an agreement on wages. The grooms were asking for a minimum wage of R14,000 but have settled in the meantime for what trainer Mike Azzie confirmed was a “substantial increase”. It is said that wages will be raised to R4,000 per month.
As far as Phumelela’s Racing Manager Clyde Basel is concerned, racing will be going ahead at Turffontein on Sunday. “I am not under the impression that Sunday is at risk,” said Basel.
The doubt came about as a result of Thursday’s Vaal race meeting being cancelled due to a strike by the Randjesfontein grooms. Trainers were unable to leave the centre on Wednesday evening until late and then there were attempts to stop them from entering the centre on Thursday morning.
According to Basel any wage negotiations had to be handled by the trainers and their respective grooms. “Phumelela leases the stables to the trainers and we need to ensure they abide by the conditions of that lease. They are also licensed by the National Horseracing Authority (NHA) and it is up to the NHA to ensure that trainers abide by the conditions of the licence.”
Basel added: “Trainers at Turffontein and the Vaal will now engage with their grooms and hopefully they too will come to an agreement.
“As a result, even though we need to understand the situation is volatile, I am not under the impression that Sunday’s Turffontein meeting is at risk,” said Basel. – from TAB News.