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Racecourse Deaths – question

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  • #1695049
    zilzal
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    • Total Posts 1092

    When a horse dies on a racecourse are the veterinary and animal disposal costs etc met by the trainer/connections or are they met by the racecourse?

    #1695093
    zilzal
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    • Total Posts 1092

    No takers yet!

    The loss of Sarson’s Risk at Nottingham today carrying 9-13 as reported below raises another question

    Is there any correlation between the increased weights horses now carry and the current incidence of equine mortality on the racecourse? Those weights that were carried in his race today would have looked somewhat odd when I first took an interest in the sport back in the 1980s – an interest much lapsed over the years. Did the increase in these weights occur gradually over the years or was there some key year(s) when these changes were made?

    #1695104
    Salateen
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    • Total Posts 31

    I shall rake up your second message, Zilzal, and likewise have been concerned about the increase in weights carried by flat racehorses.
    I too pore over correlations for most aspects of life.
    There was an increase in weights during the covid fraud and it seems to have persisted in general although I vaguely recall there was some spin about the increase having been reversed (this doesn’t really seem to have happened) after covid ‘ended’ (it’s hard for something to end if it never began.)
    There was the perfect opportunity during ‘covid’ to miss a season and change the classics to four-year olds with three years old being the earliest age at which a racehorse could run; nevertheless and, in spite of the purportedly severe risks to health, racing (and other ‘pain et jeux’ betting and entertainment sports) resumed after a few weeks (I guess they like the money, already.)
    I am a Newbury shareholder and an aficionado of the flat (I gave up on the sticks over thirty years ago) however left york in distress after the second race on Musidora day after the heart-rending, desperate death of poor, uncomprehending Hispanic, who hobbled several furlongs with a loose fore until he approached the one pole; I haven’t followed a race since and wonder if and when I shall feel able to do so.
    I phoned the bha while Hispanic died and, needless to say, have not received any response to my voicemail from the establishment facilitators.
    I have to some extent digressed however I absolutely agree that the increase in weights is obviously a significant factor in fatalities on the flat.

    #1695105
    Avatar photoEx RubyLight
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    • Total Posts 3891

    Interesting comment, Salatten.
    I also have a question: Why do NH horses have to carry almost two stones extra than their Flat counterparts?

    It makes no sense to put extra weight when also jumping an obstacle. Imagine the participants over 3,000 metres steeple chase in Athletics (Track and Field) being ten kilos heavier than the athletes contesting the 3,000 metres Flat.

    No wonder you have so many fatal breakdowns over the jumps: Longer races, more weight and no proper sire with a NH background.

    #1695106
    zilzal
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    • Total Posts 1092

    Thanks for that reply, Salateen. It appears then there have not been sufficient voices of concern regarding the weight issue from within the racing circle and the racing media advocating on behalf of the interest of the horses. The racing authorities shouldn’t underestimate how these horrific fatalities particularly when viewed on the course can affect those who follow the sport. I will always remember a Channel 4 edition from the 80s or 90s which ended with a race in which a one of the runners raced up the straight at Kempton (possibly Sandown) with one of his back legs swinging around wildly. Brough Scott I think it was who had to sign off stoically after that. That was an unusual back then which makes me think the current state of affairs is not normal at all.

    #1695109
    Helcatmudwrestler
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    • Total Posts 320

    As to cost , i would guess the racecourse pay a retainer to the knackers truck on course for meeting and they turn any profit they can buying any carcass .
    As to vets , I would hope initial treatment such as euthanasia or stabalising into horse ambulance and back to racecourse stables is covered by racecourse/bha .
    TBH on both accounts both guesses .

    #1695111
    moehat
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    • Total Posts 9161

    But a euthanised horse can’t be used for anything can it?

    #1695112
    Avatar photoTonge
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    • Total Posts 2833

    Ask ITV’s Racing FAQs!

    #1695114
    Helcatmudwrestler
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    • Total Posts 320

    Euthanased horse could be used for its hide , or any other by products . Not sure what kind of profit in individual horse but there must be something in it for the knackers van to park up oncourse for three or four hours .
    Baseballs used to be made of horse hide by all accounts .

    #1695115
    Avatar photoTonge
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    • Total Posts 2833

    I remember the furore when it was revealed that Grand National casualty Dark Ivy’s hide was found to be on sale locally. Owners were supposedly appalled and it was retrieved for burial.

    I very much hope that “salvage value” isn’t a consideration when it comes to (for example) administering painkillers to a stricken horse.

    #1695120
    griff11
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    • Total Posts 263

    So, you’re now getting appalled by the heavy weights a horse has to carry? Seriously???

    You’re talking about a powerful 1200lb physically fit animal, carrying up to 10% of its bodyweight over a distance of 5f+ and that weight for the kost part is working in unison with the horse!!!

    I’m not at all sure why many of you take such an interest in the sport to be honest, it’s almost masochistic.

    Soldiers for instance will carry well in excess of the 10% (approx 20lbs), quickly over extreme distances, even out hunting there will be unfit horses carting crap jockeys over hedges and galloping across fields. In recent times they were pulling ploughs and carts.

    The weight may make a difference to a race result, but not to a horses ability to carry it.

    Now, the breeding of the horses may have some merits and perhaps have a correlation to fatalities, but a pound here and there by a jockey on a 1200lb horse, I’m sorry, I think you’re getting yourself excited about nothing.

    #1695142
    Avatar photoDrone
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    • Total Posts 5960

    I’m somewhat out of the loop racing-wise so I stand to be corrected but as far as I’m aware:

    Standard topweight (ignoring penalties and the like) on the Flat for 4yo+ is 10-02. That’s a mere 2lb increase on the 10-00 it was for decades. 10-02 is the bottomweight in NH and the topweight in that pursuit is 12-00

    The Flat bottomweight is now 8-02 which has risen in increments from the 7-07 it was back in the ’70s

    So the Flat handicap has become significantly compressed whilst the NH handicap has remained largely the same

    So, those who hold the wholly erroneous belief (IMVHO) that 1,000lb horses now carrying a couple more pounds are more prone to injury should perhaps be grateful that topweight hasn’t risen commensurate to the rise in bottomweight

    The rise in bottomweight is of course welcome as the supply of malnourished dwarves capable of riding at less than 8st has thankfully been dramatically reduced

    #1695200
    Avatar photoMiss Woodford
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    • Total Posts 1654

    “No wonder you have so many fatal breakdowns over the jumps: Longer races, more weight and no proper sire with a NH background.

    You’ve just described American timber racing. The 2024 Virginia Gold Cup winner is by Tiznow and the 2024 Maryland Hunt Cup winner is by Caspar Netscher; both races 4 miles with horses carrying 11st 11lbs. And yet there’s been no spate of fatalities therein.

    In the US flat horses are carrying less than they have in the past. The 126lbs they traditionally carry in the Kentucky Derby (which was standardized many decades ago) is the maximum that most of them will carry in any other race in their lives. Handicap races have all but disappeared on the flat and those that do exist rarely have horses carry above 124. And yet…well, you can check those statistics for yourself.

    #1695202
    zilzal
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    • Total Posts 1092

    Dirtyoldtown was carrying 9.10 when he was pulled up on Sunday at Newmarket with several others carrying similar weights. Twenty-five / thirty years ago was it not mainly only in Amateur races that such weights were common apart maybe from the top weight in a handicap race. I presume the horses today are also carrying one or two more pounds on their gallops at home. Perhaps the Racing Post might publish an article on the subject if they have not already.

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