Northland horse trainer, Donna Logan, in Singapore faces uncertain future

Whangārei’s Donna Logan and her staff are facing an uncertain future after news the Singapore races will discontinue in October 2024.

Famed Northland horse trainer based in Singapore, Donna Logan, is facing an uncertain future once racing in the country discontinues from October next year following a government decision.

The Singapore government’s decision has rocked the tight-knit racing community, which has 23 licensed trainers, including Kiwi expats Stephen Gray and Logan, who look after 716 thoroughbreds.

The government wants to repurpose the 120ha of land in Kranji on which the Singapore Racecourse sits.

The Singapore Turf Club will hold its final race meeting on October 5, 2024.


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Racing has been run in Singapore for more than 180 years across three venues — Farrer Park, Bukit Timah and Kranji — with the latter being the home of the Singapore Turf Club for the past 23 years.

The tiny nation continually reviews its land use plans to best meet its needs and the Crown-owned site at Kranji represents a valuable resource.

Kranji Racecourse in Singapore. The government wants to repurpose the 120ha of land on which the racecourse sits. Photo / Getty Images
Kranji Racecourse in Singapore. The government wants to repurpose the 120ha of land on which the racecourse sits. Photo / Getty Images

Logan, who has lived in Singapore for six years, said the announcement floored everyone because no one saw it coming.

“The shock of that announcement has really been so upsetting and disturbing for so many trainers, jockeys, vets — everybody here. Morale is very low, as one would expect.


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“As for my future, it’s way too early and most people are in the same position as me, trying to absorb the fact we’ve been told we have to go, let alone imagine where to, or what to do. I have no plans at this point. I’ve got a commitment to my clients, my staff, my horses, and I am going to stay to the end,” Logan said.

Her options include Australia or Korea, which was looking for trainers, and returning home but, after living in crime-free Singapore she has concerns about adjusting to life in New Zealand.

“I am really confused about the state of New Zealand with the crime. That concerns me a lot because we are crime-free here. There’s no such thing as a ram raid. Never ever would there be a ram raid. There’s no such thing as rape, murders that don’t happen in this country. They are very strict.

“To leave my home unlocked for a week, to leave my keys in the car when I go shopping, to leave my handbag on the front seat with credit cards and the keys is not unusual, because no one steals. The punishment here is so severe that they know they don’t want to do it. I am scared to come home and try and readjust.”

Logan said her team made a huge commitment to leave family, friends and children behind and go to Singapore and said the ramifications of the announcement were “just enormous”.

“I’ve got horses in quarantine, ready to come in, and then we tell the clients we’ve got only one year of racing to go. Two jockeys have just said to me we come where you go. They are lost too. They don’t know where to go and what to do. Some of these jockeys have never done anything else.”

Logan called an urgent staff meeting and said she would continue to do the best and for as long as she could for people who’ve been loyal, hard working, reliable and honest to her.

She has been inundated with phone calls and emails, messages and flowers, and said there were a lot of good people in the world who cared for what her team was doing.

Opportunities have already been put forward as to her future, but Logan said she was not in the frame of mind to make decisions at the moment.

“I have had a wonderful life in Singapore. It’s a great place to live, its climate is amazing, the food’s fantastic, it’s central throughout the world, and the racing has been fabulous. It’s a huge decision and one we’ll in due course make, but there’ll be opportunities coming in all the time for us.


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When the government made a decision, she said it was usually steadfast but her team was looking to appeal for an extension.

“That would probably be one avenue we’d try and pursue because even if they want the land in October, they may have no development planned for five years for it. So maybe they grant us an extension.”

Logan will be in New Zealand for the Ready to Run Sails in Karaka in November.

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