Welfare and Safety Summit set for 2020; feedback sought

Posted: Nov. 22, 2109

The ninth Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit will be held June 23, 2020, at the Keeneland sales pavilion in Lexington, Ky.

The summit, which brings together a cross-section of the breeding, racing and veterinary communities, again will be underwritten and coordinated by The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and hosted by the Keeneland Association.

The first summit was held in October 2006. Subsequent editions were held in March 2008, June 2010, October 2012, July 2014, July 2015, July 2016, and June 2018.

“The Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit demonstrates our industry’s dedication to the safety of our equine and human athletes,” said Jamie Haydon, president of Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation. “Improving health, safety and welfare are more important than ever, and this summit continually provides an opportunity for industry experts to share their best practices, research findings and offer recommendations.”

The summit is open to the public and a live webcast will be available. A formal agenda and a list of speakers will be announced at a later date.

Industry participants will be able to provide feedback on those issues they rank as most related to the safety, health and welfare of our industry through this online survey until the end of this year.

“Keeneland strongly supports the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit, and we are honored to again host this important industry event,” Keeneland President and Chief Executive Officer Bill Thomason said. “Many of racing’s most exciting safety advances have germinated from these expert discussions, and it is critical that we continue this dialogue.”

Among the major accomplishments that have evolved from the previous eight summits are the Equine Injury Database; the Jockey Injury Database; the Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory; a uniform trainer test and study guide; the racing surfaces white paper and publication of educational bulletins for track maintenance; the publication of stallion durability statistics; the Hoof: Inside and Out DVD, available in English and Spanish; protocols for horses working off of the veterinarian’s list; recommended regulations that void the claim of horses suffering injuries during a race; and inclement weather protocols.