Supreme Horse Racing Club will not be allowed to own or part-own racehorses in Ireland from today, after having registrations of all their horses voided by Horse Racing Ireland
HRI had stopped withdrawals from the club's account earlier in October and went on to impose a ban on running or entering any horses from October 22, when Supreme Horse Racing Club's representatives continued to ignore requests for full member's details.
Nearly a month later, the governing body has still not received the necessary paperwork and was stood up by Supreme Horse Racing Club manager Steve Massey, whom they sought to meet on November 4.
HRI was left with no choice but to close down Supreme Horse Racing Club's account and void the registrations of all horses that run under its banner, including Cheltenham Gold Cup hope Kemboy, and added that it would fully brief the British Horseracing Authority of its findings.
HRI director of racing Jason Morris said: "We will be sharing our information with our colleagues in the BHA. We have also reported our concerns around the administration of the club to the relevant authorities."
Recognising that this situation was caused by the managers of the club and not the club members, Morris added that the organisation was willing to work with club members to form new ownership structures.
“This week we have met with solicitor Patrick Kennedy of P.J O’Meara Solicitors in Thurles, who has been approached by a number of Supreme Horse Racing Club members laying claim to ownership of the horses," he said. "That grouping has expressed their intention, over time, to form a new ownership structure. We will continue to work with this group, and others, should they materialise.
“HRI is open to accept the re-registration of these horses under accepted ownership structures. HRI cannot adjudicate as to the shareholding of these horses. In order to do so, HRI advises members to seek their own legal counsel or contact Patrick Kennedy in order for agreement to be found among the shareholders of each horse."
Supreme's Timeline Of Self-Destruction
Supreme Horse Racing Club's fall from grace began this summer when HRI received complaints from several members, alleging financial impropreity and fradulent activities, that could in some cases be considered theft. Here's how it has played out since:
- July 31, 2019 - HRI meets with Supreme Horse Racing Club trustee Steve Massey, who agrees to file full members' details, as required under HRI Directive 15 Racehorse Ownership.
- October 6, 2019 - As HRI waits for information, Robin De Carlow wins a Grade 3 chase in the club's colours at Tipperary.
- October 7, 2019 - HRI notifies Supreme Horse Racing Club that its HRI account - which houses prize money winnings - is now suspended, and no withdrawals can be made until full members' details are provided.
- October 13, 2019 - Listen Dear wins for the club for the ninth time - their account is still suspended.
- October 17, 2019 - HRI makes another request for information, warning that suspension of running and entering horses will follow if this request is not fulfilled.
- October 22, 2019 - Patience exhausted, HRI announces that the club's 29 horses are banned from running until further notice. On the same day Listed Dear is sold at auction for €38,000, with club members saying they were not even told she was being sold.
- November 4, 2019 - Club trustee Steve Massey has arranged to meet HRI, but does not show, and offers no explanation.
- November 14, 2019 - HRI closes Supreme Horse Racing Club's account, voiding registration of their horses.
It appears a sorry end to a syndicate that promised so much when it was formed by Massey and Jim Balfry in 2011. They have enjoyed unprecedented success growing to a membership base estimated to be beyond 500 people, with 29 horses on their books.
That includes Topham Chase winner Cadmium, Grade 1-winning hurdler Aramon, the mighty Kemboy and of course Robin De Carlow. It remains to be seen if any will get to run again this season.