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Horseracing a national sport; include in recovery plan

A section of the stands at Ellis Thomas Downs after Hurricane Irma hit the British Virgin Islands

Third District Representative, Julian Fraser has lamented that government has omitted plans to restore the Ellis Thomas Downs from the proposed Recovery and Development Plan for the British Virgin Islands.

Fraser described horseracing as one of the top sports in the BVI and said it should receive a share of the estimated $721 million that will be used to fund the plan.

Following Hurricane Irma last September, the Sea Cows Bay-based sports facility – which is located in the Third District – was massively damaged.

“There has to be a line item in here (the recovery plan) specific for that facility if we are going to address a passion of the people of this territory, not just the Third District, but a passion of the people of the territory,” Fraser said.

Premier Dr D Orlando Smith then promised to include it in the plan.

“I agree that it is indeed an important sport,” Dr Smith said. “I also agree that it needs attention.”

Proposals to get attention

Premier Smith said proposals to develop the horseracing facility was handed to government and will be considered.

“I think now is a good time to look at those proposals and make decisions so we could have a more effective … horseracing [product] in the territory,” the Premier said.

In the recent past, the BVI Horse Owners Association said they had submitted proposals to government, including one that would allow investors to develop and operate the track.

Among the benefits from such an undertaking would be job creation as well as an overall win-win for government and other stakeholders.

Copyright 2018 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

15 Comments

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  1. Kingfish says:

    Horse racing should be outlawed, it is cruelty to animals. Government should not spend a penny on this so called sport.

  2. Sam the man says:

    Says it all about Fraser and Smith that they even consider this worthy of attention or money! So many more important issues to attend to…. Horse racing in the BVI is quite frankly ridiculous, build low cost affordable housing on the race ground instead… Much better use for the common people rather than the rich elite…

    • ??? says:

      Sam the man,

      All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Sure there are more important things to be done but sports are an important part of any society and even generates revenue in some cases. Open up you all’s minds.

  3. Albion says:

    Seriously? The High School and over half the primary schools are completely trashed, and he is talking about horse racing?

  4. Ford says:

    He’s full of nonsense. More unimportant issues at hand. So glad he isn’t the premier.

  5. maybe says:

    fix the damn roads!

  6. BOSANG says:

    @ Sam the Bam.”build low cost affordable housing on the race ground instead.

    FOR WHOM???

    • Sam the man says:

      For local people that can’t afford to pay the crazy rents being demanded by landlords, affordable rented accommodation is also needed much more than ever otherwise essential resources will continue to leave….not rocket science Botang!

  7. Littlejohn says:

    Do these ppl every think before they open their mouths and utter such stupid, inane, inappropriate and insensitive remarks. God help the BVI if these ppl have any say in the reconstruction of the territory. We’re all bloody doomed.

  8. Prophet says:

    The horse track needs to be privatized and wagering legalized before anything sensible can come out of this

  9. bvi weak says:

    Has Frazer lost his way?

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