An Australian thoroughbred trainer has been suspended for 27 months and fined $A2500 over the dumping of 13 dead horses over a period of nine years in a South Australian conservation area.
The penalties were imposed by Thoroughbred Racing South Australia stewards on permit trainer Trevor Day.
Stewards determined in their inquiries, which ended on April 30, that the horses were in Day’s care before their deaths and had been disposed of over a nine-year period in the Mt Magnificent Conservation Park.
Stewards were able to account for a total of 13 deceased horses at the site. This number included one thoroughbred broodmare, four unidentified horses, one foal (which was born dead), one stallion, two thoroughbred mares, two unnamed thoroughbreds, one named but unraced thoroughbred, and one former racehorse.
They determined that all the horses either died from an injury sustained or from an illness.
“There was no evidence, and stewards were satisfied, that none of the deceased horses were either ill-treated or subjected to welfare-related issues,” according to the stipendiary steward’s report, signed by the chairman of stewards, Johan Petzer
In cases where euthanasia was required, it occurred in accordance with accepted standards, he said.
Day was subsequently charged under the rules of racing with engaging in conduct prejudicial to the image of racing over his dumping of the horses’ remains.
He admitted the charge. The stewards, in determining penalty, took into account Day’s guilty plea and his clean record during a longstanding involvement in the industry.
Day’s cooperation and his frank and honest evidence at the inquiry was also noted, but Petzer said the seriousness of the offence and the need for deterrence also had to be considered in setting the penalty.