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Milton Harris: Horse racing trainer stripped of licence after ‘campaign of abuse’



Milton Harris: Horse racing trainer stripped of licence after ‘campaign of abuse’

In written reasons issued by the BHA’s Licensing Committee on Wednesday a series of incidents relating to Harris’ behaviour were outlined.

The committee found Harris had carried out a “campaign of abuse and harassment” over several years against Simon Earle, who ran a neighbouring horse training yard.

A recording was played to the hearing from July 2020 when Harris had accused Earle of reporting him for breaching Covid regulations.

“MH [Harris] is very aggressive. He shouts at SE [Earle] and directs a torrent of invective, belittling and emasculating him,” the report states.

In October 2020, there was a further incident in which Harris threatened to block off the stable at Earle’s yard which Earle recorded. The committee found that Harris’ behaviour was “belittling, and his threats were designed deliberately to have greatest impact” on Earle.

There were also incidents in February and March 2021 which led the BHA to issue Harris with a written warning because of his conduct towards Earle.

In June 2022 there was an incident during which Earle recorded Harris calling him “mummy’s little boy” and “pathetic” while also swearing at him.

The committee found this was “yet another example of MH [Harris] humiliating, abusing, insulting, demeaning, and belittling” Earle.

There was a further incident that day which ended with Harris suggesting they have a boxing match to sort out their differences.

“MH [Harris] gave evidence that he had suggested that he and SE [Earle] settle their scores by having a boxing match ‘under Queensbury Rules’,” the report found.

“He explained that he had dealt with other professional disputes in this fashion previously and seemed to think that this was an acceptable approach to dispute resolution by a racehorse trainer.”

The report found that “the course of bullying conduct has continued until very recently” with another incident in November 2023.

The panel wrote: “It is clear to the panel that the bullying and harassment campaign which MH [Harris] was orchestrating left SE [Earle] with few good options.

“It is apparent to us that MH [Harris] has had a significant adverse impact on SE [Earle]’s psychological wellbeing, which ought to have been entirely foreseeable to him. The conduct of MH [Harris] was not a proportionate or justifiable response to the difficulty he was facing with his fellow trainer and neighbour.”

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