The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has so much on their plate right now that people are starting to question whether they’re cheating at the Sunday buffet with an Alan Partridge large plate scam. Sadly this is not the case and today they have announced that inquiries in whip usage and the tragic events that surrounded the Grand National should be completed by October.
Both reviews will be completely separate but the timetable it’s stuck to will be a similar one.
Chris Brand, acting Chief Executive for the BHA, said: “We have already announced we are taking a lead on the reviews into acceptable whip use and the Grand National. As the sport’s regulator, it is our natural role to do so.
“Determining how the whip is best regulated within racing for the overall good of the sport is without doubt the most far-reaching issue.
“The Grand National review will focus on safety, managing risk and the communication of those issues. We will work closely with Aintree and seek feedback from animal welfare groups and racing’s participants. If changes are to be made, it will only be after thorough, considered investigation.
The Grand National, won by Ballabriggs, was overshadowed by the loss of two horses in the race that was run over only 28 fences for the first time ever. There was also the near death of 22-year-old Irish jockey Peter Toole.
Stier added: “For the past six months, both internally and with the PJA and RSPCA, we have been looking at the effectiveness of the whip rules and the associated penalty structure. We need to acknowledge the thoughts of the wider community on the use of the whip, but be measured in our thinking.
“We will seek the views and input from various sectors within the industry, including RSPCA, SSPCA and WHW, take into account focused opinion research and the views of those who watch and bet on racing.”
The BHA also has to complete investigations into jockeys involved in race fixing. Now you can see why their plate is overflowing with gravy right now.