BVI News

BVI needs horse racing, restore the sport — Fraser

The Ellis Thomas Downs in Sea Cows Bay, Tortola. (Photo by Andre ‘Shadow’ Dawson)

Representative for the Third Electoral District Julian Fraser is, once again, calling for the legislators to give attention to horse racing, which he described as the largest sport in the British Virgin Islands.

He complained that the sport was given no inclusion in the final draft of the Recovery & Development Plan that Premier Dr D Orlando Smith has brought before the House of Assembly for approval.

Fraser said locals are generally invested in the sport and allowing it to remain in its current state of dilapidation and collapse might have unpleasant effects on the territory.

“Horse racing serves a purpose. It’s recreation, it’s a place that people congregate. There are those who are involved in the business of horse racing — deep. And with these various involvements, people as a whole feel better about themselves. They don’t do certain things they would otherwise do if they weren’t at the track or [if they weren’t] looking forward to going to the track. If you remove that, they find other things to do … not all of which are constructive,” Fraser told the House of Assembly this week.

Fraser is particularly pushing for the government to step in and initiate repairs to the territory’s horseracing track — the Ellis Thomas Downs in Sea Cows Bay — which is located in his constituency.

The facility was massively devasted during the 2017 hurricanes. And, despite what can be described as valiant attempts to host the annual August Tuesday races as part of emancipation festivities this year, the event did not happen.

“Horse racing has suffered by far the biggest loss by practically any single industry,” Fraser said. “Ellis Thomas Downs was practically wiped out … The grandstand is in shambles — can’t be used. The running surface destroyed totally. But when you look at this [recovery] plan, it (the horseracing facility) is not even mentioned.”

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11 Comments

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  1. Rubbish! says:

    Really? If it was self sustaining then fine….more important things to consider at the moment don’t you think?

    Like 15
    Dislike 3
  2. BVI IS SAD says:

    The concern is on ANIMALS and not the YOUTH, THESE POLITICIANS ARE WORRIED ABOUT HORSE RACING ALL YEAR ROUND YOU SEEING BVINEWS POSTING ARTICLES ON HORSE RACE. NOT ONCE THEY HAVE POSTED ABOUT THE BASKETBALL ARENA THAT NEEDS REPAIR, NOT ONCE HAVE THEY MENTIONED THE A O SHIRLEY RECREATION GROUNDS, THE NEIGHBOURHOOD BASKETBALL COURT THAT NEED REPAIR TO THE BACKBOARDS AND RIMS, NOT ONCE THEY HAVE MENTIONED THE PUBLIC PARKS. THANKS GOOD WE HAD VOLUNTEERS TO REPAIR QUEEN ELIZABETH PARK FOR FREE. KNOW ITS NOT EVEN SICKENING THAT THIS IS HAPPENING ITS ACTUALLY SAD BECAUSE AS TIME PASS, YOU SEEING MORE AND MORE KIDS ON THE BLOCK WITH MARIJUANA JOINT TO THEIR MOUTH. ITS REALLY REALLY SAD AND HEART BROKEN. NOT TO MENTION THE SOFTBALL FIELD ALSO NEEDS REPAIRING, THIS IS REALLY SAD TO SEE OUR LEADERS BE MORE CONCERN ABOUT HORSE RACING BEING MUCH MORE IMPORTANT THAN OUR NEXT GENERATION. LET ME EVEN MAKING MORE SIMPLE TO UNDERSTNAD, THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS STILL HAVEN’T BEEN TOUCHED FOR REPAIRS. THAT’S WHAT REALLY SAD. IT COME LIKE THEY INTENTIONALLY SAYING THE PEOPLE IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS ARE SO STUPID THAT CAN FOCUS ON DOING OUR ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES AND THEY WON’T SEE ANYTHING. SAD SAD SAD SAD BVI

    Like 14
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  3. Umpire says:

    What about the Walwyn Brewley softball field? Nothing had been done other than the volunteer work done by Brian Maduro to clear and dispose of the rubble from the park.

  4. Foolish says:

    People around here don’t have the money to be betting on such foolishness. Fix the schools instead.

    Like 10
  5. Priorities says:

    This should be last in a long list, first schools and youth outlets/sports. Without para-mutual betting there’s no return for government.

  6. Cromwell says:

    Just one more example of how these people are totally unfit to govern. The islands are in ruins, the police have no buildings in Virgin Gorda to work from, people are dieing at an above average rate due to conditions, and this individual wants to spend money on a race track. Wake up people.

  7. FoolFraser says:

    How about putting a roof on the schools..are you really that d*mb?

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  8. Fraser says:

    What about the school?..

  9. Sam the Man says:

    This is why Fraser became irrelevant – horse racing will never be a viable economic commodity in the BVI, it’s never made any money and is a total waste of good land that could be used for homes….

    Like 3
    Dislike 1
  10. hmmm says:

    the context in which he addressed the horse racing was about people finding a positive family friendly outlet to have fun vs going to clubs at night. Listen to HOA and stop reading the news clippings

    Like 1
    Dislike 1

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