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Call for whip ban at Jockey Club race
Posted 14 October 2004
Photocall as dominatrixes give jockeys a whipping
Date: 15th October
Time: 12.45 pm
Location: Gate 1, Rowley Mile, Newmarket Racecourses
As part of national campaign group Animal Aid's call for a ban on the use of the whip, PVC-clad dominatrixes will be surprising race-goers at the Jockey Club's private event, the Newmarket Challenge Whip, in which jockeys compete for the prize of a whip. The dominatrixes will invite the jockeys to offer their own rumps for a whipping to see how they like it.
Animal Aid has produced a report, A Hiding to Nothing, that shows that not only is whipping cruel, but also that it causes horses to perform less well. In response, the Jockey Club agreed, stating that "more races are lost rather than won through use of the whip." In light of this, Animal Aid is baffled as to why the whip has not been banned.
"The use of the whip is of major animal welfare concern. In addition to being an instrument of pain, it also distracts the horses' attention, sometimes with tragic consequences, as documented by Animal Aid's video footage."
André Menache MRCVS, Scientific Consultant to Animal Aid
There is an evocative account of whip use given by the owner of a young filly in a letter to Racing Post. Wrote Jasmine Chesters:
"When she came out for her first race this year, the only words I can use are that she was thrashed. Not by other horses, but by her jockey. She was hit at least 12 times inside the last furlong and a half and finished third. Her rider was suspended for two days but the harm he did to my horse was incalculable. She has never run the same since. She breaks well but on reaching about the four-furlong pole, when she is nearly always in the first four or five, as soon as she is smacked to push her on, she drops herself out. Her emotions must be in turmoil. She must be expecting to be thrashed again. We have nursed her all season but to no avail. Now I have to make the decision as to what to do with her."