Retired standardbred Remi looking to the future.
THE welfare of standardbreds has always been at the forefront of Harness Racing New South Wales’ strategies and now the controlling body will develop a rehoming strategy in consultation with the Harness Racing Industry Consultation Group (HRICG).
HRICG is a legislated body made up of representatives from the owners, breeders, trainers, drivers and Clubs which is led by leading breeder/owner Peter Neil.
The group delegates meetings with HRNSW every two months and play an active role in the development of industry strategies.
Whilst successful partnerships have been formed with other various individuals and equine welfare groups a precise strategy has not been constructed from within the wider industry and that is where HRICG becomes involved.
A specialist Rehoming Work Group has been formed which will provide initiatives for consideration and implementation by HRNSW.
Each of the represented bodies will provide a suitable specialist delegate to the group who will provide insight into what is required and what is achievable.
“Many rehoming initiatives are already in place and have been for countless years such as riding schools and companion horses but there can always be expansion of these efforts,” said HRNSW chief executive officer John Dumesny.
“A significant number of these horse movements are diligently undertaken by the owners themselves taking due care and keeping secure records but it is more than appropriate that we provide a whole of industry approach.
“There are great examples of the diligence of owners to take long term care of their horses past racing.”
“Naturally the mares go to the breeding farms and the champions and not so champions are more often than not found grazing the paddocks of their caring owners.
“Peter and Marie Neil for example find homes for a significant number of their horses each and every year and their record keeping is impeccable which allows for tracking of the individual horses.
“Recently HRNSW have taken a horse from the Standardbred Pleasure and Performance Horse Association, an unnamed unraced son of Grinfromeartoear with the stable name Remi which was once owned by Emilio and Mary Rosati who purchased the horse at the Bathurst Gold Crown Yearling Sale in 2012 .
“Remi is now in our care at the Menangle Park Training Centre and will soon compete in horse shows against former super-star pacer Chariot King which has been almost unbeatable in the show ring.
“This group (SPPHA) put in a truly marvellous effort in rehoming standardbreds but they always need financial assistance.
“Former Minister for Racing Graham West’s daughter Siobhan acquired a horse she called Jay from Wendy Turnbull and now has it as her pet . . . there are so many good stories.”
Rehoming of horses can be a costly exercise and there is a consideration from HRNSW which will be placed before the HRICG Work Group that a levy on prizemoney could be a logical solution to funding future rehoming of suitable standardbreds.
“The HRNSW Board dedicated funding through Tax Parity to equine welfare which accounts for the life-long tracking and care of standardbreds but this can easily be increased and direction and support is being sought from the industry through a consultative process,” Dumesny said.
“I am certain the industry will support the use of financial resources to this end.”
Any harness racing participant or stakeholder who wants to contribute to the HRICG Rehoming Work Group can correspond direct to firstname.lastname@example.org and place their ideas on record.
Harness Racing NSW (HRNSW) is the controlling body for harness racing in New South Wales with responsibility for commercial and regulatory management of the industry including 33 racing clubs across the State. HRNSW is headed by an industry-appointed Board of Directors and is independent of Government.
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