The shocking deaths of three jumps racing horses in a week in Victoria present the strongest argument yet for a complete end to the sport in Victoria and South Australia – the only States where jumps racing occurs.
RSPCA’s Senior Scientific Officer, Dr Di Evans, said one horse, Fieldmaster had been euthanased last Wednesday (April 27th) after breaking his leg during trials at Cranbourne Racecourse.
“On Tuesday – the first day of the 3-day Warrnambool Carnival, Cliff’s Dream was put down after fracturing his knee on the second last hurdle of a 3200-metre race”, Dr Evans said.
“And yesterday, Tuscan Fire was pulled out of the Galleywood Hurdle after fracturing a bone in his leg and was also put down”.
“Two deaths in two days are simply unacceptable, and there is one more day of the Warrnambool Carnival to go. The horrible injuries and deaths which have occurred in this industry prove that the assurances that Racing Victoria provided about improved safety cannot mitigate the serious risks involved”.
“We note the sad comments from the owners, who compare the deaths of their horses with ‘a death in the family’. However, it’s unlikely that they would place anyone in their families at such a risk of injury or death”.
“The RSPCA strongly opposes this dangerous sport, because the horses are required to jump over many obstacles at speed, while running long distances and carrying a heavy weight. As a result, jumps horses are highly susceptible to horrific falls, injuries and death”.
“The South Australian Government has responded to widespread community concern with its Select Committee inquiry into jumps racing. RSPCA Australia provided strong evidence to the Select Committee last month, where we took issue with the lack of transparency in the industry over injuries and deaths in training and trials, and in the weeks following races”.
“This week’s Warrnambool Carnival deaths prove that Victoria and South Australia should be following the lead of every other State and Territory and cease jumps racing once and for all”.
“RSPCA Australia urges people who are as horrified as we are to contact their State Ministers for Racing and demand an end to jumps racing”, Dr Evans said.
For more information, go to: http://www.rspca.org.au/jumps-racing