KINGSTON, Jamaica – During the three-month break of racing due to the spread of COVID-19, clock man Raymond “Tony” Chadman, who has worked in that capacity for over 30 years, says he had to survive mainly from personal savings.
“Thank God for savings and some other people who chipped in and supported me during this break due to the coronavirus. We have gone three months without work, and it was very hard to go through those days.
“If you are not skilful with the little that you have, then you will be in a big, big problem. This pandemic is all over the place; it is a worldwide thing, and who does not have it to survive, they will go down.
“It has not been easy for me at all. But with relatives and friends dropping in here and there and the little savings that I have, which is not much based on my salary, I was able to manage,” Chadman revealed.
“It is good that racing is returning. I mean, things are great, and I hope that everyone follows protocols and make racing continue through this. It is terrific to be back on the job,” he added.
Chadman said that while his job is a very demanding one, it also has its advantages.
“This job is not an easy one; it is complicated. You have to be here at the racetrack at 5:00 am, and the place is very dark at that time, and your eyes have to be all over the place. A few trainers would call and say that their horses are working, but otherwise, from that, you have to be struggling to look into the dark for the horses working out.
“But the work has its advantages as well. One of the advantages is seeing the horses for yourself because sometimes you see things that the public does not see. For example, the horse’s condition is down some days, and the next time it picks up,” Chadman said.
Chadman informed that it is difficult to get up every day for work when there is not much benefit for clockers at the racetrack.
“Jamaicans clockers compared to clockers aboard, based on what I have heard, is like cheese to chalk, and I would like to see that improve in terms of financial security,” he ended.