We have all heard of the Dynamic Duo of Batman and Robin. The Royal Turf Club have their own Dynamic Duo in Wayne Wood, the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Stipendiary Stewards, as well as Sinclair Marshall who will perform the duties of Clerk of the Course, Stipendiary Steward and Riding Instructor.

With excitement and activities up in Nuwara Eliya escalating, both Wood and Marshall have their work cut out for them, ensuring that the action on the race track is nothing short of perfect!

“Having Sinclair here to support me in the daily routine work on the track such as regularly attending to trackwork supervision, advising the riders in developing their style and stable supervision, etc will ensure that I can devote more time to the he administration of the Royal Turf Club and other racing matters”, said Wood. He also said went on to say, “Sinclair is an excellent horseman and our individual skills compliment each other. Where I have had many years of administration at a high level following an extensive horse background, Sinclair has been hands on with horses all his life.”

Together they are a perfect team with over 100 years racing experience and the Royal Turf Club assures all Sri Lankan equine enthusiasts of professional racing at the Highest level.

Both Wood and Marshall worked closely in Bangalore creating an Apprentice Jockey School, which has turned out several excellent prospects for the future. They intend doing the same in Sri Lanka, training local riders and developing the skills of the current jockeys. One training tool will be a simulator, which the RTC is sourcing for all riders to improve their fitness and riding style.

Since joining the RTC Mr. Marshall has implemented a system where each thoroughbred has an individual saddlecloth number, which must be placed under the saddle whenever the horse is being exercised. Mr. Marshall said, “This assists in identifying the horses for recording what work they have done and should the rider err in any way during exercise, the horse is readily identifiable and thus the rider may face a penalty.” Another innovation to assist in ascertaining the fitness of riders is that they must sign an attendance book whenever they ride . Mr. Marshall has held a few classes for the riders explaining the need to and how they should prepare for a race, checking that the jockeys maintain a constant weight.

Mr. Marshall opens the track at 6-30am every morning and has stopped much of the vehicular traffic where the horses are walked until trackwork is completed. For those who rise early you will see Mr. Marshall riding a racehorse himself to check the safety of the course especially on racedays.

Both Wood and Marshall are hands on and walk the length of the course daily, check the stables making sure all is in order, and are in constant touch with the trainers. They are willing to assist the licensees wherever possible but come race days, don’t cross the line with the Chief and his Marshall!