Racecourse defends safety concerns following opening day fatalities - The Leamington Observer
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Racecourse defends safety concerns following opening day fatalities

Shaun Reynolds 29th Sep, 2017 Updated: 29th Sep, 2017

WARWICK Racecourse has defended criticism from animal rights campaigners following the death of two horses at the track.

Eight-year-old geldings Fort Worth and Get Involved both lost their lives at the first fence in the home straight during Tuesday’s Grand Season Opener.

Animal rights group Animal Aid claimed the fence had little give, but racecourse bosses said the safety of horses and jockeys was a top priority.

A spokesperson for Warwick Racecourse said: “British Racing’s top priority is the safety of all its participants and we are open about and proud of the efforts the sport makes in this regard.

“You cannot remove all risk from any sport and that includes horse racing, but each year 90,000 horses race and 99.8 per cent do so without serious injury.”

The fatalities occurred three years after Warwick Racecourse switched to a jumps only venue following the death of Artful Lady during a flat meeting in May 2014.

Dene Stansall, Animal Aid’s racing consultant, said the Jockey Club and Warwick Racecourse should be asking why the deaths happened.

He said: “The falls of Fort Worth and Get Involved were shocking to see.

“While one horse fell in contention at full speed, the other should have been pulled up as he was behind and never in a position of winning.”

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