CLARIFICATION ON RACE DAY TREATMENTS
The ATA has sought extensive clarification from Racing Victoria on what therapeutic treatments and procedures are permitted and what therapeutic treatments and procedures are prohibited on race day. Chief Veterinary Steward Brian Stewart has agreed to provide a comprehensive communication paper for distribution to all trainers.
ON-COURSE TREATMENT OF INJURED RACEHORSES
Following a series of meetings with Colin Alderson, John Alducci and Racing Victoria Chief Veterinary Steward Brian Stewart, new guidelines are being drafted for the on-course treatment of horses injured during races. Apart from the existing regulation testing and swab procedures associated with Integrity, the ATA has for some time been concerned with the lack of veterinary facilities and resources available to treat horses who have sustained injuries during races. The availability of such facilities could often be the difference between minimising the risks of further injury and / or effect its rate of recovery. Brian Stewart has advised the ATA that following consultation with leading equine veterinarians and the University of Melbourne, a new set of guidelines and procedures will be developed for review and approval by the ATA Victorian Branch Committee.
INTEGRITY / VETERINARY ISSUES
Colin Alderson and John Alducci have been engaged in on-going discussions with the RVL Integrity Department in relation to reducing the inconvenience and costs to trainers and owners incurred through some Integrity requirements, without diminishing the integrity of racing. The ATA will continue to update trainers on these issues.
MEETING WITH RACING INTEGRITY COMMISSIONER
Following the release of his own motion inquiry into Race Fixing, Racing Integrity Commissioner will meet with Colin Alderson and John Alducci next week to discuss the Review and its recommendations.
NON-PAYMENT OF TRAINING FEES BY OWNERS
Discussions are continuing with Racing Victoria and the ATA’s legal counsel on issues relation to the non-payment of training fees by owners and the ability of removing a defaulting manager of a horse.
The ATA will keep Members informed on any developments on this crucial issue.
PROPOSED REDUCTION IN LATE NOMINATION FEES
Racing Victoria has responded positively to an ATA proposal to reduce the cost of Late Nomination fees. The ATA argued that the present costs – 3% of prize money, were excessive and unfair where in an overwhelming majority of instances, nomination deadlines were missed owing to genuine oversight. The ATA proposed that the Late Nomination fee be reduced and Racing Victoria has advised the ATA that it expects all metropolitan clubs and CRV to approve a reduction in fees.
RAISING WEIGHTS AT ACCEPTANCE TIME
Following discussions between the ATA and RVL’s Greg Carpenter, a four month trial will be conducted commencing April 1 and ending July 31 2013, of the following system based on the WA model: “If the highest weighted horse at acceptance time has less than 58kgs, its weight shall be raised to 58kgs, and horses off the minimum shall have their weights raised by the same amount”. These changes will apply to all handicap races and exclude all Group and Listed races, during the trial period.
PROGRAMMING / BENCHMARK CHANGES
At the recent Programming Review meeting, RVL Racing Operations proposed replacing the 0-68 and BM72 races with one category – a BM70 race type, and in conjunction with this proposed change and to maintain a 6 point spread between race types, a new programming structure has been proposed:
> 0-58 races (unchanged)
> 0-64 races (previously 0-62)
> BM70 (combined 0-68 and BM72)
> BM78 (unchanged)
> BM89 (unchanged)
> Open handicaps (unchanged)
The proposed changes will be presented to the ATA Victorian Branch Committee for their approval and it is proposed to commence this new system on 1 August 2013.
TRACKWORK HOURS REVIEW
RVL appointed IER Research Consultants have completed interviews with trainers at the major training centres – Flemington, Caulfield and Cranbourne, as part of their Trackwork Training Hours review. The final stage of the Review involves a Survey which has been distributed to all Victorian trainers, and the ATA urges trainers to participate in this Survey.
RVL has advised the ATA that a new Track Manager has been appointed to oversee track preparation at Stony Creek. The ATA informed RVL that the track preparation and track rating for last week’s race meeting was unacceptable to trainers and requested urgent and immediate action to ensure there would not be a recurrence of these problems. RVL has assured the ATA that interim arrangements for track management and preparation would be in place.