Some people perceive horse racing to be cruel

You’re at an event and someone you’ve not seen for years asks you what you’ve been up to recently. Well, you say, I’ve recently joined a racing club – YORC. We enjoy a day at the races even more now that we are on the inside, we get to speak directly with the trainers and jockeys. We enjoy the full VIP experience.

Your friend comments that they understood horse racing to be a cruel sport as that’s what is always portrayed in the media…

Negative press about horse racing

Some voices in the media will always report negative news stories about anything. When it comes to horseracing and animal welfare, the opponents of the sport can be heard shouting very loudly. However, it is evident that most owners, trainers and jockeys, especially those with whom YORC are involved, have a genuine concern for the welfare of the animals under their care, and are therefore not among the minority of those who treat horses badly.

There has always been a significant amount of bad press about horse racing and no doubt there always will be, as a nation, the UK news outlets tend to broadcast bad news over positive news as that’s what sells newspapers. In the past, there have been instances where mistakes have been made and sadly horses have been injured. Thankfully training methods, our trainers’ understanding of dietary requirements and ourability to interpret the health of our horses, constantly continues to improve. This results in our horses being treated with the highest respect and being very well looked after indeed.

At YORC we care about the welfare of our horses

Gutsy Lady after her race

Gutsy Lady in the parade ring after her race

Yorkshire Owners Racing Club sees animal welfare as paramount, not only because the healthier and happier the horse the more likely they are to win for us but because it matters to us as people. As a club, a group of people hoping to add to their enjoyment of a day out at the races, that enjoyment would be marred if we suspected our horses were being mistreated, pushed beyond their limits or injuries not being dealt with effectively.

Our jockeys understand our horses, more than that, they develop a bond with them. They invest time with them riding out on a morning, listening to our trainers and vets about their health and how they’ve been day-to-day. Our jockeys can tell when a horse is being tricky because it’s feeling ‘that way out’ or if it’s being stubborn because it is in pain and needs treatment. When owners, trainers and jockeys take the time to understand each animal in their care, the risk of mistreatment is significantly reduced. By being a member of YORC you are helping to ensure the excellent treatment of the horses you’re supporting.

How can you tell if a horse isn’t happy?

Don’t worry, they let us know!

Some opponents of horseracing claim that the very act of riding a horse causes it pain and suffering. It’s widely accepted that a horse who does not want to carry a person will make its feelings extremely clear, generally by throwing the rider off! In the same way, a horse who does not want to run, will not run!

In addition to the fact that YORC members genuinely care about the health and welfare of our horses, there are strict guidelines in place from the British Horseracing Authority to ensure that all animals (and humans) are treated well, not abused and are fully supported by the industry.

If you want to find out more about being on the inside, and enjoying VIP days at the races as a member of YORC, simply get in touch and we’ll get back to you asap.

Be part of our club, experience how it feels to have a horse in the race!