|For Immediate Release, Wednesday 28 April 2021|
Melbourne Cup deaths are a reflection of a much greater issue
Anthony Van Dyck is 1 in 120 per year
As Racing Victoria releases stage one of its fatality report, focused on the 2020 Melbourne Cup death of Anthony Van Dyck, it is once again made apparent that their concern lays in public perception not concern for its horses.
The introduction for new screening processes will only be for horses seeking to compete in the Spring Carnival, and only Melbourne Cup running horses will be required to undergo CT scans prior to the race.
“Why do these new safety measures only apply to horses competing in the spring carnival and in particular the Melbourne Cup?” asks Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses (CPR) Campaign Director Elio Celotto.
“One horse is killed on Australain racetracks every three days. The measures Racing Victoria put in place to address the ongoing deaths at the Melbourne Cup, must be put in place for all horses, on all days, at all racetracks”.
“Furthermore they would do away with the whips spurs and tongue ties that are designed to push a horse to beyond their physical limits” he said.
“Anything less is further evidence that it is the industry’s image that is of sole concern here, as they grapple to maintain their social license.”
But CT scans will not be enough to address deaths on the racetrack.
“Racing Victoria and the Victorian government have funded studies into the leading cause of fatal catastrohic injuries to find bone fatigue as the leading cause, with Prof. Chris Whitton from the University of Melbourne stating this can only be addressed by racing horses less often and allowing them to take significantly longer spelling periods. Yet, the industry have no rules as to how often a horse can be raced and how long their rest periods must be”.
More on that here.
“Trainers can race a horse as often and as hard as they like, meaning the industry is knowingly placing horses at risk of death.”
CPR is calling on all state juristrictions to implement the screening measures set for the Melbourne Cup runners to be exteneded to all horses, at all racetracks, along with limits on how often a horse can be raced and how long they must be spelled, as guided by the findings of the equine orthopedaedic research team at the University of Melbourne.
For More information: horseracingkills.com