RUDDY ALLEN – Jamaica Observer – September 17, 2019
In continuation of celebrating 60 years of thoroughbred racing at Caymanas Park, Supreme Venture Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL), the sole promoter of local horse racing recognised stakeholders and staff members for their long and fruitful service to the industry.
The presentation ceremony was held at the Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston last Friday evening (September 13). Lorna Gooden, general manager at SVREL, congratulated the awardees for their commitment to building the sport of horse racing in Jamaica.
“Jamaica continues to dominate the horse racing industry in the Caribbean and our horsemen are household names in the country with many achieving international acclaim.
“None of this would be possible without the dedicated men and women who have worked tirelessly over the decades and seeing them here this evening with us is a symbol of loyalty and camaraderie which implies a strong sense of belonging.
“Caymanas Park is fortunate to have a dedicated team whose many years of commitment and hard work has earned us respect as innovators and as a cultural mainstay among Jamaicans.
“To tonight’s (Friday) awardees, what each of you has contributed is nothing less than a shining symbol of your passion, dedication, and perseverance and may each of you continue to be a model for your peers and colleagues.
“Caymanas Park and SVREL sincerely thank you for your commitment. It has been a tremendous journey marked with memories that we will continue to honour and keep alive through Caymanas Park and its surrounding communities. Thank you for transformational work that you have done and continue to do as we celebrate 60 years taking horse racing entertainment into the future.
“Let us continue on this momentum of a strong and enterprising team spirit taking on new challenges and making full use of the opportunities that are presented to us. Congratulations once again to those who are being honoured tonight. And let me wish you a Happy 60th anniversary,” Gooden said.
Leroy Tomlinson, one of many trainers who were recognised, has been serving the industry for 31 years and is still going strong in the business.
“It’s very nice to get recognised in the racing industry, and yes, I appreciate it a lot and I hope that some more people can get recognised because there are still a lot of people down there [at Caymanas Park] that don’t get recognised, but for my award — I love it,” the 54-year-old Tomlinson told The Supreme Racing Guide.
He continued: “I will cherish this award. I have been in racing from I was 14 years old and that’s some 40 years ago, and I have no regrets choosing a profession in the sport. The Jockey’s Club gave me my first licence and many people in racing right now don’t know anything about the Jockey’s Club.”
Another trainer Gresford “Greasie” Smith, who has been in the business for 39 years, was beaming with joy after receiving his award. “Well, it is always a good thing that your industry recognises and appreciates the work that you have put in over the years. I am really happy to be recognised and at such a wonderful presentation function as the one tonight.
“I have been at Caymanas Park for 39 years and my career has been good. In any profession, you are going to have your ups and downs but for the most part, I think, I would do it again. I must thank Supreme Venture Racing and Entertainment Limited for this recognition and I will continue to do the hard work,” Smith said.