The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has confirmed its excluded 11 individuals who were involved in an episode of violent disorder at Goodwood racecourse on 5 May 2018.

Following the incident, which took place in May last year, a total of nine people were handed jail sentences, with 11 defendants pleading guilty to a range of offences. 

The BHA exclusions imposed on all 11 individuals are for an indefinite period with a minimum of three years and prevent them from entering any premises licensed by the BHA, which includes racecourses and training yards.

Chris Watts, Head of Integrity for the BHA, stated: “A day at the races is a fun, safe and relaxing day out that is suitable for all the family. The sport will not tolerate any incidents of serious anti-social behaviour and, in this case, gratuitous violence. On the very rare occasions when it does occur we will work collaboratively with the police and the racecourses to ensure that the appropriate action is taken against the individuals involved.”

The sentences handed out ranged from 18 months to two years, with the most severe sentence being handed to a 27 year old from Southampton, who was caught on video violently kicking someone to the head as they whilst they were on the ground.

Adam Waterworth, Managing Director of Sport at Goodwood racecourse, added: “We are delighted that the evidence we provided has helped secure an appropriately serious sentence for the perpetrators of this incident. We take a zero-tolerance stance on anti-social behaviour here at Goodwood, and to support this, we installed an extensive CCTV network across the course a few years ago, which helped us provide clear footage to Sussex Police of the incident.

“This sends out a strong message to the public – anti-social behaviour is not welcome at Goodwood, and we will continue to be vigilant so racegoers can enjoy the best possible experience when they come racing with us.”

Insider Insight: It’s imperative that the racing sector acts fast to ensure that the events of last year aren’t repeated and the sport once again builds its reputation as a fun family day out. The actions of the BHA in banning these individuals combined with the criminal sentences handed out will certainly be seen as a welcome deterrent from many within racing. 

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