Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup: Thoroughbred Trash?

Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup: Thoroughbred Trash?

Witnessing the magnificent race horses run around the oval grass track at the Garrison is a beautiful and memorable experience. Our six-furlong grass track and the high standards of Barbados’ horse racing are sources of immense pride in Barbados.

The garbage left there after a race is not.

The Barbados Turf Club, established in 1905, regulates and promotes horse racing in Barbados and organizes three seasons of racing per year:  January to April, May to August, and October to December.  Recently, the Barbados government gave $19 million to the Club.

Could not a few dollars have been spent on a couple of guys to pick up trash?

Trash from Saturday’s race — the Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup, billed by the Club as one of “the most prestigious races on the Barbados racing calendar” — was, on Sunday, blowing all the way down the street to the Yacht Club.  I took the photos below at 11 a.m. on Sunday.  No one was there tending to the trash … I take that back; birds were everywhere, lovin’ it.  A man lay passed out beneath a bleacher.

The races take place at the Garrison, which has been the home of horse racing since the colonial days of 1845. According to the Barbados Turf Club website, “the officers of the British Regiment who were stationed in Barbados, used what was then the parade ground to match their horses in races and the wealthy merchants and planters later joined them.”

I’m just a transplanted Yank but I’m proud that Barbados is home to such a legacy.

Sweeping up after ourselves isn’t only about keeping things looking nice for our tourists; it’s about self-dignity and caring for our national treasures.

Oh, you want results of yesterday’s race?  They’re here ….

And here:





11 Responses to “Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup: Thoroughbred Trash?”

  1. bajanbat says:

    Well, well. No surprise here. We dump in the gullies in the dark of night. We dump toxic and non-degradable materials anywhere we like. So to leave the Garrison in this state is just par for our sad course. It is disgraceful but that makes no difference. I guess from the $19m write off the BTC recently were granted they were not able to find any spare change to pay for a prompt clean up after the race day.
    Thanks for highlighting this situation., I wish I could say I hope things get better but I am a Bajan and know better than to waste that hope.

  2. Ian Bourne says:

    You have to ask if BTC approached the SSA as this is a commercial operation? The Authority has to plan overtime, teams and how the clean-up is organised! Many Bajans feel Sanitation is Barbados’ personal maid – i.e. “Just pick it up, we give you a job by littering!” That is so asinine… Part 6 of the Health Act states if an entity stages an event, they must plan for its cleaning whether using SSA or paying a 3rd party. Most folks see SSA as free, so if Government would levy the service and make Bajans feel it in their pockets along with serious enforcement maybe then they will behave different, it was legislated and enforced with seat-belts …. why not littering?

  3. homegrown says:

    If recycling was religion Barbados would have it down pat… often I am the subject of those that wish to convince all to get to god and the importance of religion– fare enough but the minute I ask about how said person treats the earth that god gave them I hear about the landfill. I am not impressed.

  4. Beefcake says:

    To clarify your comment

    The $19 million was an act of debt-forgiveness for arrears in income tax.

    They were relieved of the liability (which I doubt they would have ever paid anyhow); so there was no cash inflow.

    Ironically, the members of that organisation are in a far better position to pay that debt.

    This is part of why Barbados is so messed up and morally bankrupting itself.

  5. planetbarbados says:

    I knew the $19m was debt-forgiveness, but it’s the same diff. Whether you give me $19 to pay my MasterCard or $19 to run around and spend, you’ve still given me $19.

    And if I make a mess, I can
    a) get some volunteers from my family or circle of friends or membership to help me clean up
    b) spend just-earned money from the day’s revenues to hire cleaners
    c) charge the cleaning, because, of course, my MasterCard was just paid down.

    It’s about pride. But if pride isn’t enough of an incentive, maybe the economics of the question is: What tourist will choose Barbados if, say, another island is cleaner?

    At Trinidad’s Carnival, I was amazed, delighted, and impressed to go out to the festivities each morning and find all the trash bins had been emptied and streets cleaned.

  6. Hammer says:

    The Sandy Lane Gold Cup really is a world-class horse race…

    It’s amazing that this race is beamed by television to various places around the world. In the hopes of exposing the island so that more visitors would come to this beautiful island…

    Yet we leave the place in such a stinking mess… I just can’t figure this out…

    We seem not to understand that when we destroy this idyllic paradise no one will even want to come.

  7. planetbarbados says:

    I thought the same thing. When I was there taking photos and saw all those pink signs with Sandy Lane’s logo wrapped around tree trunks, it occurred to me that Sandy Lane would not under any circumstances want to be associated with this stinking mess (quite literally stinking) and would have taken steps to ensure that its name would never be sullied like that. Ditto the Barbados Turf Club, of course, but Sandy Lane has a reputation for class and distinction the world over .. Why would they risk being taken down a notch?

  8. jonathan simpson says:

    We all know bajans do not care, but thankfully the Turf Club and the SSA had everything arranged

  9. Charlotte says:

    The Sandy Lane Gold Cup really is a world-class horse race…?
    There I can laugh only loudly.
    With these participants?
    See my Homepage and :

  10. dnodog says:

    yes it is. A top class race has had some of the leading riders in europe ride in the race makes it that. Also the Bajan boys have dominated racetracks across Canada.

  11. Charlotte says:

    The Show Must Go On

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