Three horses have died at this week’s meeting with Ballyward, Sir ERec and Invitation Only all fatally injured.And Animal Aid were quick to condemn
Three horses have died at this week’s meeting with Ballyward, Sir ERec and Invitation Only all fatally injured.
And Animal Aid were quick to condemn the injuries, calling for Cheltenham Festivals to be no more.
They tweeted: “Animal Aid demands an end to all future racing at Cheltenham, and calls for the British Horseracing Authority to be removed as the welfare regulator of race horses, as a third horse is killed at the Festival Meeting. #CheltenhamFestival”
The three deaths at Cheltenham Festival this year take the tally of horses being killed at the event up to 43 since 2007.
It comes despite new safety and welfare measures having been introduced at the Gloucestershire racetrack.
Every horse at the meeting now has a veterinary check before racing for the first time.
Officials are also telling inexperienced jockeys to walk the course before riding at the event.
Animal Aid had tweeted in the immediate aftermath of Invitation Only’s death, posting: “Shocking scenes at Cheltenham Racecourse as 8-year-old gelding Invitation Only is killed at a notorious downhill fence. His death follows that of Sir Erec, in an earlier race this afternoon. It is unforgivable that these horses have lost their lives for the sake of entertainment.”
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PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) have also condemned the deaths at the event.
In a statement before Invitation Only was fatally injured, Mimi Bekhechi, Director of International Programmes at PETA, said: “Sir Erec – who, according to reports, was already suffering from a leg injury prior to the race – is the latest horse to lose his life in this racing season’s carnage.
“Authorities must urgently investigate how he was cleared to race and whether he was on medication that masked an injury – and if so, file cruelty charges quickly.
“How many more horse deaths is it going to take before we put the abusive horse-racing industry out to pasture?”