Author |  Mark Jones

I wonder when our handicapping committee and handicapper are going to do something to help young drivers get opportunities in our industry?

And at the same time give owners an option for their horses?

Clearly, we need a system where we can put junior drivers on horses in open races and the horses lose points in line with the number of wins the junior has had.

In simple terms, so a horse can get into a lower grade race, we offer the young people an opportunity. That can’t be bad? Can it?

The gallops have weight claims, we have nothing! I believe our standard of juniors is lower than it should be and these drivers need to race against more experienced drivers more often to learn, but also to survive. How long do we hang on to the young people before they say, you know, I’ve had enough, I’m off to do something else?

I do believe they enter the driving ranks with poor learning and understanding of driving and at cadet level this needs addressing fast. Then, we can’t offer them much more than the odd basic opportunity.

I’ve experienced this in Sydney where every one of my horses could drop back a grade if I put a concession junior on so why can’t this happen here?

In simple terms, so a horse can get into a lower grade race, we offer the young people an opportunity. That can’t be bad? Can it?

This time of the season we have very few two-year-olds racing and I believe this is due to absolutely no advantages in starting two-year-olds as they get slaughtered under the handicapping points system.

So, owners are getting shafted again.

We need to address our industry quick to make it enticing and rewarding for owners and young people wanting to make a career in harness racing as at the moment we are killing ourselves from within.