ATA Victorian Branch – Members Update / Victoria / 26 Nov, 2009


The ATA’s nominated candidate for the Racing Victoria Limited Board, David Moodie, has been elected to serve a three year term. David Moodie, the former President of the Thoroughbred Racehorse Owners Association (TROA), brings a wealth of racing knowledge and experience to the RVL Board.

A prominent owner breeder of many Black type and Group One winners, David has firmly pledged to pursue many of the issues which the ATA has been lobbying hard for in Victoria over a long period of time. Major issues such as metropolitan and country prize money, streamlining racing administration through cost savings and the implementation of administrative efficiencies, the registration of owners, training facilities, the future viability of the racing industry and the communications process between RVL and its stakeholders, have been high on the list of ATA priorities for some time.

At a time when the challenges to the racing industry get stronger and tougher, the time for real positive action becomes an even greater priority. The ATA is confident that David Moodie will be an appropriate advocate for industry participants, and from our own perspective, for racehorse trainers and the issues that confront them.

Importantly, he has also committed to maintaining regular communication with the ATA and consulting with our organisation on industry issues.

The ATA would also like to congratulate Ross Dobinson, Brian Gurry and Barbara Saunders on their election to the Board. We look forward to a constructive and productive working relationship with the RVL Board.


The ATA has endorsed the Racing Outplacement Program developed by the Cyberhorse organisation, which will address the many welfare issues which confront owners of racehorses that are about to be retired, and who face an uncertain future.

The Outplacement Program’s primary mission is to provide a life after racing for racehorses, and importantly to address some of the negative perceptions about thoroughbred racing and horse welfare that are being promoted by the animal welfare lobby, which clearly is of concern to the ATA.

One of the key issues confronting connections when a horse is about to retire, is the time and effort that is required to find good homes for horses leaving stables after they have completed their racing careers. The Outplacement Program focuses on using the contacts and relationships that have been developed by Cyberhorse with the wider Australian equestrian community, and the network of outplacement consultants who are experienced in retraining these retired horses for other pursuits. The equestrian sector is generally regarded as the ideal placement venue for retired racehorses.

Under the Outplacement Program, retired horses are taught new skills and retrained for a new career, where a horse is capable of adding value and financing its own retirement and successfully addressing many of the welfare issues that arise when a racehorse is retired from racing.

The ATA has expressed its concerns to RVL over the need to develop a cohesive and effective strategy to better communicate the welfare issues which have been grossly misrepresented by sections of the animal welfare lobby. In this regard, we welcome the RVL initiative to address this deficiency through the appointment of an equine welfare officer.


As reported in the November issue of Inside Racing, the new Horse Training Industry Award covering stable employees comes into operation on January 1 2010. A full copy of the new Award was forwarded to ATA Members. Members are again reminded that the ATA Industrial Relations Manager, Wayne Lee, is the contact point for all matters relating to the new Award, and any Members requiring information on their obligations to their staff or seeking clarification of any aspect of the Award are encouraged to contact Wayne at the ATA office on 03 9372 1688.