Gamblers and horse enthusiasts alike will mourn its loss
As we watch the Tokyo Olympics, it’s hard to think of what could improve the spectacle other than having crowds in the stadium. Certainly, no one has suggested that blindfolding the athletes, whipping them into terror, and placing a lithe person in silk pyjamas on their backs would improve the 100-metre final.
In Groningen, on Sunday, there was a huge crowd for the final ever horse races in the Stadspark: 135 years of gambling, animal cruelty, and garish outfits has come to an end. Some spoilsports even paid for a plane to fly over with a banner ‘thanking’ the Gemeente for their ending of the cruel tradition. As reported by the GIC.
Stadspark to become entertainment venue
In any case, the Stadspark in Groningen can draw far larger crowds for music and performances at the “Drafbaan”, and the City of Groningen will be spending over a million euros to convert the track into somewhere to enjoy bands like The Rolling Stones, who played in Groningen in 1999.
In between imbibing whole bottles of port and forcing horses to panic for our pleasure, the Royal Hardraverij & Ren Vereniging Groningen (the organisers) had the amusing idea to name a prize after the two city Alderpeople to ban the ‘sport’- creating the “Glimina Chakor & Inge Jongman Thanks Prize”.
The Royal Harddraverij and Renvereniging Groningen (KHRV) had argued that the races were a ‘Groninger tradition’, but unfortunately ‘tradition’ doesn’t make up for cruelty.
Images via the GIC.