Racecourse Officials Strongly Condemn Violence After 50-Person Haydock Brawl

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistFebruary 17, 2019

HAYDOCK, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 25:  Cue Card ridden by Harry Cobden in the Parade Ring before the Betfair Chase on November 25, 2017 in Haydock, England. (Photo by Mark Robinson/Getty Images)
Mark Robinson/Getty Images

Officials from the Racecourse Association denounced those responsible for a mass brawl that occurred at Haydock Park Racecourse on Saturday in Merseyside, England.

Per the Mirror's Keith Hamer and Alex Smith, the RCA addressed the fight in a statement on Sunday:

"The RCA strongly condemns the appalling behaviour of a small group of racegoers whose actions have taken the shine off a fantastic Saturday of racing.

"Racecourse stewards and security teams are trained to detect and close down crowd disturbances in the rare incidents when they arise, as was the case Haydock Park.

"Police are present at race meetings across the country where they deem it necessary in consultation with each racecourse."

HAYDOCK, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 05:  Horses and riders compete during The Watch Racing Uk Anywhere Maiden Hurdle Race at Haydock Racecourse on December 5, 2018 in Haydock, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

A Haydock spokesperson also called out the perpetrators and said a police investigation was ongoing. One person has been arrested, according to the report.

An earlier report by the Mirror's Liam Prenderville stated 50 persons took part in the brawl and that women and children were caught in the violence.

TV presenter John Sharpson shared video of part of the melee (warning: graphic):

According to Prenderville, the brawl took place during the final of eight races on the day, the Walrus Open Hunters' Chase.

Per Hamer and Smith, it was but the latest example of violence at a British racecourse after events at Goodwood and Ascot were marred by fighting in consecutive weeks last year.

Those events led to more security at British racetracks, but this latest brawl proves those measures were insufficient.

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