Jockeys’ benefits ‘ secure’
QUEENSLAND jockeys left a high- powered meeting with racing bosses yesterday satisfied there were no immediate plans to slash their benefits.
The state’s jockeys went into the meeting with interim Racing Queensland CEO Ian Hall wanting answers over rumours of potential cuts to worker’s compensation, prizemoney and riding fees.
Hall, of accounting firm KPMG, took charge after the dismissal of former Racing Queensland CEO Darren Condon following the greyhound live- baiting scandal.
Hall repeatedly assured the jockeys, led by experienced hoop Larry Cassidy, it was “business as usual” and said there was no blueprint to cut benefits in the short- term.
“He listened carefully to our concerns about WorkCover and other benefits and he said at this stage, it was business as usual,” Queensland Jockeys Association president Glen Prentice said.
“He made it pretty clear he had the best interests of the industry at heart, although they ( RQ) are still establishing the financial position of the organisation. At this stage, WorkCover, other jockey benefits and prizemoney is all still intact. It was a productive meeting and hopefully it has built up a bit of confidence.”
While there are no immediate plans to cut the Queensland apprentice training program, it remains possible future options will be looked at to make it more financially viable.
“With the apprentice training program, they may have to look at opportunities to try to subsidise it,” Prentice said.
“Until they ( RQ) get the full financial picture, there will be no decisions made.
“We left the meeting happier than we thought we were going to be at the start of it.”