Reforms as jumps racing set to continue in Victoria

May 18, 2009

Racing Victoria's board has unanimously resolved to continue with jumps racing in the state, despite a worrying run of fatalities.

However, a number of reforms will be introduced which it hopes will make the sport safer for horses and jockeys. Many will be implemented immediately.

The board said today (Monday) it had considered the issue in detail following the racetrack deaths.

It promised a full review at the end of the jumping season.

"The board received written and verbal submissions representing views from both sides of the jumps racing debate. The racing industry submissions were unanimous in support of jumps racing," said Racing Victoria chairman Michael Duffy.

The board said that after extensive consultation, in particular with jockeys and trainers, the board will adopt several recommendations from the Jumps Review Panel which it believes will make jumps racing safer.

The board said it understands that accidents will occur and the changes were aimed at making jumps racing less hazardous.

These include:

"Jumps racing will be monitored on an ongoing basis. As was outlined in the Jones Report," Duffy said. "A full review of jumps racing will be conducted at the end of the 2009 jumps racing season.

"The board recognises that this issue divides some sections of the community and all these views are valid and respected. In making this decision the RVL Board is mindful of its primary obligation to the racing community and its stakeholders," Duffy said.