NZ racing’s lead body brings in horse traceability rules

Under new rules in New Zealand, those accountable for a thoroughbred must ensure that on retirement the horse goes to someone with appropriate horse knowledge. Photo by Hunter Folsom on Unsplash

New rules involving the traceability of thoroughbreds in New Zealand comes into force today, and all horses will be required to have an “Accountable person”.

That person may be an owner, racing manager, trainer or studmaster and they will be responsible for informing NZ Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) of the death or retirement from racing or breeding of the horse under their care. In the case of retirement and rehoming, they must also ensure the horse goes to someone with appropriate horse knowledge and must also provide NZTR with the contact details of the new owner.

This information can be shared with NZTR via an SR24 form, or in the case of a trainer or racing manager being the Accountable person, can be completed online through the Members’ Service Centre. There is no charge for the completion of the SR24.

The move is part of NZTR’s efforts to improve traceability of the racing and breeding thoroughbred population.

NZTR said it had been undertaking work around retirement, following up with the registered owners of those horses presently listed as “inactive” on its website. “There have been some fantastic stories of retired racehorses going to have second and even third careers as sport horses, or even those who have become much-loved paddock ornaments. We look forward to sharing these stories and welcome your personal contributions.”

A new 30-day foal notification requires NZTR to be advised of a foal’s existence within 30 days of its birth. This can be undertaken through the Breeders’ Centre online and there is no fee attached. At the time the Mare Return is filed (before February 28) the foal is registered, and the fee is paid. The introduction of the 30-day foal notification was supported by the NZ Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association and addresses the previous window of up to six months between foaling and registration.

“While it is well-known within the industry that our horses are well cared for in their retirement, recording this information allows us to better document where our retirees end up once their racing days are over,” a statement from NZTR said.

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One thought on “NZ racing’s lead body brings in horse traceability rules

  • September 1, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    So pleased about this! My horse had a trotting career before he came to me, and like a lot of riders without the money to spend on a purpose bred sporthorse, I was delighted to benefit from the fact that a race horse’s career seldom lasts many years. But it is a sad fact that the supply of retiring racehorses exceeds the number of people like me. And not all such horses can move over to a leisure horse career – and they are very often, either because they are geldings or for the same reasons that rule out a second sporting career, not good breeding prospects either – and it is those horses who need the protection of this ruling the most.


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