Nicky Henderson Believes This Is The Biggest Crisis The Industry Has Witnessed

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Nicky Henderson

Leading British trainer Nicky Henderson has expressed his thoughts during this difficult time for horse racing and has stated that it could be the worst crisis that the sport has ever seen.

Henderson believes its the worst crisis since World War II but is very thankful that the Cheltenham festival came when it did allowing him to gain three more winners to his ever growing roster of victors at Prestbury Park.

The Seven Barrows handler first landed a winner in the sport back in 1978 and has not looked back since but when summarising his career he has never witnessed anything like this since being involved in racing.

(Credit Racing Post) The 69 year old said: "We've been a lucky generation as we don't know what a war was like and this is the biggest crisis we've had to face in our lifetime. This is the worst thing to have happened to this country, or the world, for this generation and I find it very scary. It's frightening from everybody's point of view and nobody knows when the end of it is.

"It's horrible and I think it's come to the point where I find it quite scary. It's all around now, we've spent the whole winter trying to keep the horses healthy and now we have to focus on the staff. They've all been great and doing the right things to do. We've got plenty of horses here but we can't turn them out as it's too cold and the grass hasn't grown."

There has been the idea that racing could resume sooner rather than later using a series of regional hubs but the trainer was a little reserved when he first thought about the idea.

"I want to see racing resume as soon as possible but I do still think that racing has to show an element of responsibility," he said.

"Being the first sport to break out may seem an admirable thing to do but it might not be the most popular – and you need to be considerate of racing's image. At the moment the country is in crisis and a lot of people are suffering, therefore I think we do the best we can to look after our staff and our horses."

Henderson was planning on unleashing a strong summer team after having a decent time of things between June and August last year with 16 winners landing the Summer Cup and Summer Plate in England.

He added: "I was keeping a squad for summer jumping and then they [the BHA] said racing is suspended until the end of April."We don't know if racing will be back by May, June or July. There's no point keeping horses here wondering whether they will be able to race or not."

On a lighter note, Henderson added: "All the two-legged team, the staff, are still here. We've got to look after them and make sure they are alright. We've got a lot to look forward to, we have fantastic horses and a whole team of exciting bumper horses we never ran too."

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