Four horses die on opening day at UK racecourse

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Oct 25, 2009
By dvm360.com staff
Wetherby, England -- The British Horseracing Authority is investigating Wetherby Racecourse after four horses died on the opening day of jumps season.

Two horses died on the track, while two others were euthanized after sustaining injuries during races.

“It is always desperately sad when a horse has to be put down as a result of injuries sustained during racing,” said a BHA spokesperson. “In circumstances such as these it is our policy to undertake a thorough review and look into … the course, the horses, the injuries and any other relevant information.” According to media reports, Wetherby Racecourse recently underwent expensive improvement in response to criticism of the track last year.

Numerous agencies had approved the off-season changes to the track, and the day before the the race an inspector from the Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals had walked the track and didn’t see any problems.

The British Horseracing Authority is awaiting reports from the Racecourse Inspectorate, veterinarians and stewards in attendance the day of the race.