140 breaches of the whip rules in first four months of 2021

Posted on the 17th May 2021

Animal Aid has campaigned against the use of the whip, in horse racing, for more than 15 years. As part of our campaign, we collate and release data on the number of whip offences committed by jockeys each year.

The first third of this year has seen 140 breaches of the regulations by jockeys, usually for hitting their horses even more times than permitted. This shocking figure is on par with and slightly exceeds data for 2019 – the last year which saw a full racing calendar take place.

Animal Aid’s Horse Racing Consultant, Dene Stansall, has been at the forefront of recent academic studies into the efficacy of the whip, using whip-free races as a comparison, and which showed that the use of the whip in racing does nothing to improve safety or enhance winning times. The results of that research were released last year, just ahead of another study from Australia which confirmed that horses’ skin has a similar capacity to feel pain as that of humans.[1]

The British Horseracing Authority is supposed to be holding a long overdue consultation on the use of the whip in racing this year, but, in the interim, we’re asking you to write to your MP to enlist their support for a ban on the whip.

[1] https://www.animalaid.org.uk/evidence-mounts-for-a-ban-on-the-whip-in-racing/

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