Racing: Club to investigate bullying over boycott

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The Independent Online

The Jockey Club is to investigate allegations that intimidation may have been used in the attempted boycott of racing by owners and trainers at Wolverhampton last Saturday night over cuts in prize-money and also in connection with the mobile-phone dispute.

Julian Richmond-Watson, the Senior Steward, said: "We are very concerned about reports from officials about pressure being placed on individuals in relation to recent disputes.

"While everyone is entitled to their opinion on these hotly debated issues, it is unacceptable for pressure to be applied to jockeys, trainers or owners to give up opportunities to earn their living or compete for prize-money.

"We are not prepared to turn a blind eye to such reports. Due to their gravity, the allegations warrant investigation by our security department.

"We do recognise that in such cases acquiring evidence from witnesses which could be used at a formal disciplinary hearing will be very difficult.

"Whether there is any substance to the rumours or not, the talk of such incidents is damaging in itself. If they are found to be true then appropriate action will be taken."