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Waterberry Lane (Candiese Lenferna Photography)

 

The former Dean Kannemeyer-trained and late Mike Rattray-owned Waterberry Lane was scratched from the L’Ormarins King’s Plate after being sold to none other than Ricky Maingard.

The horse did not take his place because the intention was to send him to Mauritius to replace the like of Undercover Agent, who is nearing retirement.

However, in the latest round of troubles to hit the island’s horseracing fraternity the Mauritius Turf Club Sports & Leisure (MTCSL) was informed by the Horse Racing Division (HRD) of the Gambling Regulatory Authority (GRA) in a letter dated January 4 that its horse import license had been revoked.

The HRD are apparently looking into the legality of the MTCSL importing horses because their horse racing organiser’s license expired on December 31, 2022.

The Chief Stipe of the HRD, Deanthan Moodley, explained he had forwarded the file for legal advice and would communicate the results of the advice to the MTCSL upon receiving it.

The trainers and owners, who have paid for close to 30 horses to be imported from SA, are now in the dark about whether they will be transported over on the original date at the end of January.

Eighteen racehorses actually arrived in Mauritius on December 27 and they were definitely not imported by the MTCSL. So if it was necessary to be a horseracing organiser to import them, they must have been imported by the Peoples Turf PLC. However, it is believed they might not have been imported by the Peoples Turf PLC.

Furthermore, in April 2021, the Ministry of Agro-industry had authorized two other companies, which had until then needed to use the services and the endorsement of the MTC, to import horses through their own way. Neither was a race organiser and yet they were allowed to import horses from abroad.

So why this urgency to study the legal status of the MTCSL to find out whether or not it can import horses, since it is clear that there has not been the need to be a race organiser to do so since 2021?

The Le Mauricien said in an article on Saturday, referring to the expiry of the horseracing license without normal renewal and the revoking of the import license, “More than ever the economic strangulation but also the prevention of the MTCSL from existing and functioning continues inexorably…”