RoR CEO addresses international racing conference on importance of aftercare 


Di Arbuthnot, Chief Executive of Retraining of Racehorses (RoR) yesterday gave a presentation in Washington DC to delegates attending the Pan American Conference.

Before an audience of representatives of racing authorities from across North and South America, and including other jurisdictions from around the world, Di Arbuthnot spoke about the importance and the value of establishing a structure and programme to care for horses after they have finished their racing careers.

Her presentation was given the day after the first official forum for members of IFAR, the ‘International Federation for the Aftercare of Racehorses’, the launch of which was announced following a conference hosted by Godolphin in Newmarket in July last year.

In her address, entitled ‘The IFAR vision, the future of Aftercare and key outputs from the forum’, Di Arbuthnot called on her experience of leading RoR since its inception in Britain in 2000.

She spoke about why horse welfare matters, and aftercare in particular, citing the wide range of activities racehorses can be retrained in and the role this can play in maintaining high standards of horse welfare and the upholding of public confidence in the sport.

Di Arbuthnot, Chief Executive of RoR: “We all have a shared responsibility for the welfare of racehorses which extends beyond the track. Across the entire animal welfare debate, the spotlight is on an animal’s quality of life and the emerging concept of a life worth living,

“The welfare of racehorses throughout their lifetime is one of the single greatest issues facing the racing industry. A key function of IFAR is to provide help and support by sharing expertise and good practice on a global basis whilst recognizing cultural differences.”

A key objective for IFAR is for each racing authority and jurisdiction around the world to establish a structure that ensures the aftercare of racehorses is a priority.

Among the other topics being considered at the Pan American Conference are simulcasting, illegal betting, medication, harmonization of rules, international ratings and classifications, marketing, stud book issues, the importing and exporting of bloodstock, and Thoroughbred ownership. The Conference concludes on Saturday 20 May.