Crowdfunding campaign launched to 'secure future' of Jersey Race Club

Jersey Race Club's meetings at Les Landes often attract thousands of spectators. Credit: ITV Channel TV

A crowdfunding campaign has been set up by Jersey Race Club in a bid to 'secure the future' of the sport in the island.

The club is hoping to raise £50,000 to see it through to next year after all nine of its 2020 meetings were cancelled because of the pandemic.

"The club has been hit very badly by the pandemic - we've had no income, because we haven’t been able to put on the events", said vice president Hugh Raymond.

"There’s nothing to watch, nothing to do, so our income has dropped drastically".

"We’ve also seen money taken out of the economy that people forget - normally here at this time, you’d have tents up, we’d be employing people, and we’d have all the horses up".

"All that still has to go on, and it still costs money, and yeah - we’re struggling", he said.

The club has already announced nine provisional dates for next season and has turned to the public to help it through.

"It’s a good way of raising money and showing that people are interested in continuing racing", said Raymond.

"I've been very encouraged [by the early response] and I hope that people do put money into sport because I think it’s an essential part of life of jersey".

"You’ve got to remember that racing has been going on here for the last 100 plus years and we don't want to see it end".

Meanwhile, the club has also confirmed president Mark Johnson - a well-known racing commentator - has stepped down after one season in the role.

He has been involved with the club for almost 30 years but said travel restrictions had made it difficult fulfil his duties in recent months.