Hold on to reins says ex-jockey
FORMER jockey Bernie “Cups” Ryan is passionate about making a better industry for horse trainers and riders and says the TAB should not be privatised.
He was the president of the WA Jockey’s Association for more than 30 years and said that in his role he negotiated increased wages, improved health and safety standards and implemented workers compensation and superannuation for jockeys.
Ryan started a jockey apprenticeship in 1962 and in 1967 he won the Kalgoorlie Cup. A few months later he won the Perth Cup and over his career he rode about 1000 winners.
He said the TAB started as a way to replace the off-course betting shops so people in the industry got something out of it.
“It shouldn’t be sold,” he said. “I don’t know why they want to sell it, they get so much from it for doing nothing.”
He said what should be done instead is a facelift to Ascot and Belmont racecourses.
“With the new stadium, they could charge parking at Belmont and make so much more money for the industry.”
The TAB was formed in 1961 as the Wagering and the Totalisator Agency Board of WA and in its first annual report recorded a turnover of $1 million.
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