Racing NSW will establish a Horse Welfare Fund which will be predominately funded by a deduction of 1% of all prizemoney paid in the State.
It is estimated that $204 million of prizemoney will be paid in the coming year, accordingly $2 million will be taken from prizemoney. This will be in addition to Racing NSW’s existing horse welfare schemes.
The new initiative will ensure that all NSW thoroughbred horses will be appropriately cared for outside of their racing careers. This includes ex-racehorses as well as those thoroughbred horses that have never made it to the race track.
Racing NSW will provide resources for the care, retraining and eventual re-homing of all NSW thoroughbred horses including for new careers as equestrian horses, companion or pleasure horses.
Specifically, Racing NSW will establish a new operating division for:
Appointment of a dedicated team of staff to manage the program, including a Horse Welfare Veterinarian;
Establishing partnerships with riding schools, pony clubs, local agricultural societies and other equestrian organisations to promote the re-homing of thoroughbred horses;
Expanding the current Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Program with additional re-trainers to vastly increase the capacity for new horses; and
Raising awareness for thoroughbred welfare and undertaking training days for their new owners.
“I believe that thoroughbred horses are one of the best looked after and cared for breed of animals by their owners,” Racing NSW Chief Executive Peter V’landys said. “This program is just another initiative to continue the great work already being done.”
The fully funded scheme was announced in conjunction with news Sydney prizemoney on Saturdays will be a minimum of $100,000 a race as from October 1.