Bring horsemanship back into racing
If hitting a horse with a whip didn't hurt, why would they use them?
It's time to increase horsemanship in Australian racing and stop relying on beating horses to get the best out of them.
The RSPCA fronted the Australian Racing Board yesterday and urged them not to give in to a vocal minority by easing the new whip rules.
We congratulate the ARB for standing firm. They have seen through the nonsense arguments and met community expectations to improve horse welfare in racing.
It's only been one month since the new rules came into place and 99% of jockeys have had no trouble adjusting. Australian jockeys regularly have to adjust their riding style when they race overseas where whip rules are much stricter than they are here.
There is absolutely no evidence to suggest that reducing the use of whips is impacting the safety of jockeys. In fact reduced interference on the track over the past month has been directly attributed to horses not moving away from a whip.
Jockeys are still allowed to use a whip but they should not have unlimited use in the end stages of a race. A horse whipped like this in any other context would be protected by animal cruelty laws.
The new rules were introduced following a world wide trend to reduce whips in racing - we should be moving forward not backwards.