2011/09: Should jumps racing be banned in Australia?
Introduction to the media issue
Video clip at right:
a Channel 10 news report dealing with a horse jumping into the crowd during the Warrnambool Grand Annual Steeplechase in April, 2011.
If you cannot see this clip, it will be because video is blocked by your network. To view the clip, access from home or from a public library, or from another network which allows viewing of video clips.
What they said...
'It is hard to fathom how the Baillieu Government cannot see the blindingly obvious: jumps racing is a deadly and dangerous blood sport'
Glenys Oogjes, Executive Director of Animals Australia
'It's the biggest carnival we have outside the spring and brings a lot of dollars and jobs to the district'
Denis Napthine, Victoria's Racing Minister
The issue at a glance
On May 5, 2011, seven spectators were taken to hospital after a riderless horse leapt a fence and into the crowd during the Warrnambool Jumps Racing Carnival.
A two-year-old girl suffered a fractured collarbone, while an 80-year-old woman was given shoulder and hip x-rays and a 12-year-old girl x-rays on her foot.
Six of the eight horses competing did not complete the 5500m course over 33 fences.
Two days before, on May 3, 2011, a horse had to be put down and its unconscious jockey taken to hospital. Two other horses fell during the race and were injured.
The poor start to the Warrnambool Jumps Racing Carnival has led to renewed calls from animal activists and others to have jumps racing banned in Australia. To this point in 2011, five horses have died in Victoria and South Australia.
The Victorian Racing Minister, Denis Napthine, has promised there will be an investigation into the incident in which spectators were injured.
The South Australian Greens announced they would be introducing a motion into the State parliament to refer jumps racing in South Australia to the state's Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (AWAC) following the events in Warrnambool.