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FEI Tribunal issues Consent Award in equine anti-doping case

FEI Tribunal issues Consent Award in equine anti-doping case

The FEI Tribunal has issued a Consent Award in an equine anti-doping case involving a Banned Substance.

In this case, the horse Ashva Psyche (FEI ID 107YL76/URU), tested positive for the Banned Substance Stanozolol following samples taken at the CEI2*120 Costa Azul, Canelones (URU) 04-05 November 2023.

The trainer, Leandro Zubiaurre (FEI ID 10018848/URU), admitted the rule violation and accepted the consequences. In its final decision, the FEI Tribunal disqualified the horse from the event and imposed an 18-month ineligibility period on the trainer; the provisional suspension he already served shall be credited against the imposed ineligibility period. He was also fined CHF 5,000.

The full Decision is available here.

FEI Working Group proposes key changes to equestrian helmet testing standards

FEI Working Group proposes key changes to equestrian helmet testing standards

An international expert panel gathered by the FEI Medical Committee has put forward a set of key proposals to strengthen the current testing standards for equestrian helmets as a means to enhance the safety of athletes in equestrian sport.

Tasked with reviewing current equestrian helmet testing standards and related scientific literature, the FEI Helmet Working Group was established in April 2023 and is made up of a panel of international experts including engineers, standards experts, medical doctors, helmet manufacturers, athletes and representatives from horse racing.

While the FEI continues to work on reducing horse and rider falls, measures are needed in parallel to reduce the risk of significant injury when falls do occur. The FEI Helmet Working Group focused on how helmets could be even more effective at reducing the risk of serious head injuries,” FEI Medical Committee Chair Dr. Mark Hart explained.

“There are currently different testing standards around the world for equestrian helmets, with different criteria. Moreover, some of the protocols currently used for testing helmets may not reflect the research and technological advancements that have been made over the past several years.

“Helmet requirements are very sport specific. And, as the International Federation for equestrian sport, we believe that it is our duty to take the lead on assisting manufacturers with creating helmets that specifically cater to the demands of our sport and better protect our athletes’ heads. 

“The Working Group has diligently reviewed the existing testing standards as well as the relevant scientific literature, and we are confident that their conclusions will provide a clearer and more robust framework for manufacturers producing helmets in the equestrian industry.”

Following an initial in-person meeting and frequent online discussions, the FEI Helmet Working Group arrived at the following key conclusions:

  1. Scientific testing criteria needs to be improved through new computer modelling and simulations which better reflect real life accidents. This will allow for a change in helmet standards that offer athletes better protection from head injuries.
  2. Additional testing measures and updated brain energy transmission thresholds must be incorporated into the current testing protocols to better account for the varied forces that occur in equestrian falls. The FEI Helmet Working Group recommends that these new testing protocols are introduced as a requirement by the FEI around 2027 in order to allow manufacturers the time to make the necessary adjustments to their production lines.
  3. A new and improved injury reporting system should be established in order to track head injuries, and measure and evaluate the effectiveness of changes to the testing procedures.

The FEI Helmet Working Group’s technical recommendations, which are published on the FEI’s website, will now be shared with the helmet manufacturing and testing industries for feedback. The FEI intends to work collaboratively with manufacturers and helmet standard bodies to achieve these goals, which should be viewed as a new, quickly achievable step forward in allowing helmets to further reduce the transmitted energy to the brain when a fall occurs. Meanwhile, the FEI Helmet Working Group will continue their efforts to improve helmet effectiveness as new research and technology become available.

"The progress made by the Working Group represents a significant leap forward not only for athletes in our sport, but also for the entire equestrian industry”, FEI President Ingmar De Vos said.

Our vision is that the FEI Helmet Safety Working Group’s conclusions marks the start of a journey that will see the international sport governing body contributing to the elaboration of increasingly safer helmet testing standards meeting both the athletes’ needs and the interests of the manufacturers.”

HISA Submits Proposed ADMC Rule Changes to FTC for Approval

HISA Submits Proposed ADMC Rule Changes to FTC for Approval

The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) has submitted proposed rule changes to its Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for review. Red-lined documents noting these proposed changes are available here:

The FTC will subsequently post the proposed rules to the federal register for public comment.

Until changes to the rules are approved by the FTC, the previously approved version of HISA’s ADMC rules, which took effect May 22, 2023, will remain in place. Those rules are available in full on HISA’s Regulations Page.

Similar to the proposed Racetrack Safety rule changes which HISA submitted to the FTC in September, the proposed changes to the ADMC rules were developed after months of dialogue with and feedback from racing participants across the country, including HISA’s Horsemen’s Advisory Group. During this time, the proposed rules were shared with industry members for informal comments and published on HISA’s website for additional industry input. The proposed changes submitted to the FTC today were reviewed and approved by HISA’s ADMC Committee and full Board of Directors.

When and if these rule changes are approved by the FTC, HISA will undertake robust educational efforts to ensure horsemen nationwide are fully aware of these changes and well-equipped to comply with them before they go into effect.

HISA Introduces First-Ever National Concussion Protocol for Jockeys

HISA Introduces First-Ever National Concussion Protocol for Jockeys

The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) has introduced U.S. Thoroughbred racing’s first-ever recommended national concussion protocol for jockeys. Under HISA’s Racetrack Safety rules, racetracks are required to implement a concussion protocol for jockeys. HISA’s recommended protocol released today would become mandatory for all racetracks under HISA’s jurisdiction when and if the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approves HISA’s proposed changes to its Racetrack Safety rules submitted last month.

HISA’s national concussion protocol was developed in consultation with leading experts to protect the health and safety of jockeys across the country and brings racing in line with the nation’s other major sports, all of which have uniform concussion management protocols. HISA’s concussion protocol includes clear step-by-step instructions for racetrack medical personnel to follow when evaluating and monitoring riders for potential head injuries.

The new protocol also incorporates the digital concussion management platform HEADCHECK into its reporting process. Under the protocol, racetrack medical staff will use HEADCHECK to document medical evaluations, possible concussion symptoms and written releases permitting a jockey to return to riding after being cleared by a qualified medical provider knowledgeable in concussion management and the skills needed to perform as a jockey. HEADCHECK’s implementation will also see to it that concussion-related medical records follow a rider from track to track and ensure continuity of concussion care across the country. HISA has been working to implement HEADCHECK at racetracks across the country for the last several months.

In a sport like racing where athletes are at high risk for concussion, it’s crucial for every racetrack to have an established concussion protocol in place to respond to head injuries,” said HISA National Medical Director Dr. Peter Hester. “HISA’s national protocol requires prompt and correct care and clear documentation, which are essential to ensuring jockeys have the best opportunity to make a full recovery from a concussion. To prioritize jockey health, HISA strongly encourages racetracks to adopt this protocol now to help optimize safety throughout the sport.

Jockeys and their families are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with HISA’s national concussion protocol and will be notified via the HISA portal when updates are made to the protocol. Racetracks under HISA’s jurisdiction are encouraged to post a concussion protocol in a prominent place in the jockeys’ quarters.

HISA is working with racetracks to help educate medical staff and riders on the importance of concussion prevention, diagnosis and treatment – including the new national protocol and its requirements.

Court of Arbitration for Sport upholds FEI Tribunal Decision imposing 10-year suspension for horse abuse case

Court of Arbitration for Sport upholds FEI Tribunal Decision imposing 10-year suspension for horse abuse case

Following lengthy appeal proceedings, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has confirmed and upheld the FEI Tribunal’s decision in the case against Andrew Kocher delivered in June 2021, which saw the US Athlete suspended for 10 years for the use of electric spurs on several horses throughout a prolonged period of time.

Other sanctions in the FEI Tribunal decision rendered two years ago, also included the disqualification of results from eight FEI events between June 2018 and November 2019 where evidence supported the athlete’s use of electric spurs on horses, alongside a CHF 10,000 fine and legal costs to the amount of CHF 7,500. Kocher appealed the said FEI Tribunal decision on 1 July 2021, seeking to eliminate or otherwise reduce the sanctions imposed.

The FEI Tribunal decision was the result of a lengthy investigation by the FEI, starting in June 2020 following allegations of electric spur use reported to the independent Equestrian Community Integrity Unit (ECIU). It was alleged that Kocher had used electric spurs on a number of FEI registered and national horses in international and national events, and during training.

Upon the conclusion of the investigation, the FEI formally opened disciplinary proceedings against Kocher in October 2020. During the proceeding before the FEI Tribunal, it was also discovered that Kocher instructed his employees to use the electric spurs on specific horses. For that purpose, Kocher provided to his employees several electric spurs devices which he manufactured himself.

In its decision, the CAS Panel reached the same conclusion as the FEI Tribunal, to the effect that a ten-year suspension was merited, during which Kocher is barred from participating in or attending, in any capacity, including as a spectator, any competition or event that is authorised or organised by the FEI or any National Federation. The provisional suspension served by Kocher since 28 October 2020 shall be credited against this period of suspension, which will therefore come to an end on 27 October 2030. The CHF 10,000 fine was also upheld and Kocher is furthermore ordered to pay costs of CHF 7,500.

We are extremely satisfied with this outcome and that the sanctions the FEI Tribunal imposed, to reflect the severity of the offenses committed by Mr Kocher, have been upheld by CAS”, said FEI Legal Director Mikael Rentsch. 

It may have taken two years to complete this process, but it confirms that we had the right decision to start with, and that there is no room for leniency when it comes to cases of horse abuse. 

We have rules and regulations in place to protect the integrity of our competitions and the wellbeing of our horses, and when these rules are breached and their welfare is jeopardised, we will continue to seek to impose maximum sentences.”

The full CAS decision is available here.

The FEI Tribunal Decision is available here.

When Tradition meets Technology: Pivo joins FEI as Official Training Technology Partner

When Tradition meets Technology: Pivo joins FEI as Official Training Technology Partner

Pivo Inc., the Silicon Valley based company behind the AI powered smartphone mount for the creation of hands-free motion tracked videos, has become the Official FEI Training Technology Partner. 

The Pivo Pod, an AI-powered smartphone mount and performance tracking tool, has become the equipment of choice for many equestrians around the world looking to improve their riding skills. Designed for indoor and outdoor use, the mount works in tandem with a powerful application which can be downloaded for free on any smartphone.

"Today represents a significant milestone for Pivo, and we are pleased to join forces with the FEI, which shares our unwavering commitment to enriching the experience for equestrian enthusiasts worldwide," CEO of Pivo Ken Kim said.

"Pivo's journey has been an extraordinary one. We started with a versatile and fun product, which has now evolved into a specialised solution catering to a dedicated community who share a passion for equestrian as both a sport and a lifestyle at all levels.

The equestrian community was quick to recognise Pivo’s potential and we were surprised and delighted when riders, both amateur and professional, embraced our technology. The community’s suggestions – provided through user-generated content on social media – were instrumental in shaping our specific line of Pivo products that now exists for equestrians.

Our customers are at the heart of everything we do, and this collaborative spirit and dedication have been pivotal in shaping Pivo into the powerful tool it is today. Our mission now is to help 'make equestrians the best version of themselves,' and this collaboration with the FEI is a testament to the realisation of that vision.”

Pivo has already made significant inroads in major markets, including France, Germany, the UK, USA, and Australia, where riders have wholeheartedly embraced this transformative solution.

The AI-powered smartphone mount and accompanying software is designed to detect the horse and rider, and ensure that the rider stays perfectly centred in the frame. And while the Smart Capture function allows riders to take photos of themselves through voice commands, the Auto Zoom and Auto-Alignment features guarantee the capture of smooth and seamless training videos.

It is also possible to make video calls with the Horse Tracking function, so that coaches can offer real-time feedback through remote lessons.

"Our collaboration with Pivo is proof that tradition and technology can come together easily to enhance the equestrian experience," FEI Commercial Director Ralph Straus affirmed.

"Pivo's commitment to providing riders with exceptional tools for improving sporting performances, while ensuring accessibility for every equestrian enthusiast, has added unique value to our industry.

Over the years, Pivo has seamlessly integrated into the equestrian lifestyle, and has earned the trust and respect of equestrians around the world for the user-friendliness and adaptability of its products. As a company, Pivo has demonstrated a great deal of authenticity in its development style and a talent for simply listening.   

"The nature of commercial partnerships is changing, and the economic environment we are currently operating in requires a great deal of adaptability and flexibility. We are proud to be partnering with a company that is truly in tune with our community, has their ear to the ground with regards to what equestrians need and want, and is willing to take the necessary creative risks to be a game changer for our sport.”

With a passionate team of approximately 30 developers, Pivo is now looking forward to collaborating further with a broader cross section of the equestrian community, to seek insights to drive the development of their products.

From a development and growth perspective, Pivo is also considering ways to expand their team by welcoming skilled technicians with first-hand equestrian experience to steer the course of future innovations.

Three Global Experts Join the ARF Council on Anti-Illegal Betting & Related Financial Crime

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The Asian Racing Federation’s Council on Anti-Illegal Betting & Related Financial Crime (ARF Council) announced today that it has expanded its membership to include three new experts to support integrity in racing and other sports:

  • Mr. Kim Kelly, former Chief Stipendiary Steward, The Hong Kong Jockey Club;
  • Mr. Michael Phelan, former CEO, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC); and
  • Mr. Luca Esposito, General Secretary, United Lotteries for Integrity in Sport (formerly Global Lottery Monitoring System) / Executive Director, World Lottery Association.

All three have significant experience in upholding integrity of racing and other sports or combatting financial crime.

Martin Purbrick, Chairperson of the ARF Council said that “Mr. Kim Kelly is one of the most respected Stipendiary Stewards in the world of horse racing. Kim’s membership will be of great benefit to the Council’s work as it seeks to highlight how the racing model of integrity works effectively to counter the negative influence from illegal betting markets, as well as provide guidance on how horse racing’s stewarding model in racing works alongside betting analysis to detect issues in the sport and react appropriately. Mr. Michael Phelan is one of the most senior former law enforcement officers in Australia, having had a career of more than 30 years with the ACIC as well as the Australian Federal Police (AFP). Michael is a lifelong horse racing fan and will strengthen our efforts to show how horse racing has the most effective approach to integrity of all sports. Mr. Luca Esposito is a valuable addition to the Council due to his knowledge and experience of technology in betting and he brings further alignment between the ARFCouncil and the legal betting industry regarding the problem of illegal betting.”

With the addition of these new members, the ARF Council now comprises 24 experts in sports and racing integrity, law enforcement, academia, and intergovernmental relations.

About the ARF and the ARF Council

The ARF is a regional federation comprising 28 national racing authorities and racing-related organisations from across Asia, Oceania, Africa and the Middle East.

The ARF is formally linked with the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA). Australia, Hong Kong and Japan have permanent seats representing the ARF on the Executive Council of the IFHA, and the ARF also nominates one of two rotational positions on the IFHA Executive Council.

Horse racing is a participation sport with riders who are exceptional participant athletes. Racing as a sport brings positive social outcomes, which are education (of participants), employment, economic productivity, and public participation (of large audiences across societies where racing takes place).

The above contributions made by ARF members result in a wide range of positive societal benefits. These are the result of a sport operating within clear legal boundaries and supporting legal licensed betting products that are part of the entertainment around racing. This legal basis is a key part of our belief in the importance of a positive economic and social contribution by the sport of horse racing.

The Asian Racing Federation Council on Anti-illegal Betting and Related Financial Crime (ARF Council) was established in 2017 as a think tank aimed at combatting illegal betting and related financial crime. The ARF Council now comprises 24 members from organisations engaged in horse racing and sports integrity, law enforcement, the United Nations, and academia.

The ARF Council’s purpose is to research and share the scale and negative impacts of illegal betting, particularly as it relates to horse racing and sports integrity, and to foster international collaboration among stakeholders, such as horse racing operators and authorities, gambling regulators, law enforcement agencies, and government policy makers to raise awareness of the threat and to combat the negative impact of illegal betting and other financial crimes to horse racing, other sports, and to society.

55th International Conference – Racing’s Future in the Spotlight

Asian Racing Federation

The International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) has launched the 55th International Conference of Horseracing Authorities.  Held virtually for the second consecutive year, the 2021 Conference examines global racing’s evolution and future challenges. The Japan Racing Association (JRA), also a member of the ARF, is the official partner of this year’s Conference.

Trainer Johnny Farrelly excluded from British racing

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Following a five-day hearing in front of the National Safeguarding Panel (NSP), trainer Johnny Farrelly has today been found in breach of six offences under Regulation 4 and one under Regulation 6 of the BHA Safeguarding Regulations following a referral by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) to the National Safeguarding Panel.

BHA Disciplinary - William Haggas - Rule (G)2.1, fast-tracked

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£1,000 fine – breach of Rule (G)2.1 of the Rules of Racing in that on 17 July 2019 FIVE DIAMONDS ran in the 4Head Median Auction Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Class 6) at Yarmouth finishing 1st. Following the race the Stewards ordered FIVE DIAMONDS to be post-race tested. On 7 August 2019 it was reported that the post-urine sample returned by FIVE DIAMONDS tested positive for HEPS.

FEI Tribunal issues Consent Award in equine anti-doping case

FEI Tribunal issues Consent Award in equine anti-doping case

The FEI Tribunal has issued a Consent Award in an equine anti-doping case involving a Banned Substance.

In this case, the horse Ashva Psyche (FEI ID 107YL76/URU), tested positive for the Banned Substance Stanozolol following samples taken at the CEI2*120 Costa Azul, Canelones (URU) 04-05 November 2023.

The athlete, Teresa Sanchez (FEI ID 10094966/URU), admitted the rule violation and accepted the consequences. In its final decision the FEI Tribunal disqualified the horse from the event and imposed an 18-month ineligibility period on the athlete; the provisional suspension she already served shall be credited against the imposed ineligibility period. She was also fined CHF 5,000 and all results from the event were disqualified.

The full Decision is available here.

HISA Announces Data Disclosure Policy

HISA Announces Data Disclosure Policy

The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) today announced its formal data disclosure policy which includes the routine public release of data collected through its Racetrack Safety (RS) and Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Programs, as well as a process through which individuals may request additional records from HISA. The policy is as follows:

The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority, Inc. (“HISA”) is a private, independent, self-regulatory, nonprofit corporation, and, therefore, is not subject to the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) or state and local open records laws. However, as the organization charged with developing and implementing a horseracing anti-doping and medication control (“ADMC”) program and a racetrack safety (“RS”) program for covered horses, covered persons, and covered horseraces, HISA believes that sharing certain data and information collected in connection with these programs is integral to improving the safety and integrity of Thoroughbred racing.

As part of HISA’s commitment to public reporting, HISA intends to release certain data under the RS program on a quarterly basis beginning in the first quarter of 2024. Going forward, an annual report will be released in Q1 of each calendar year that presents new data from Q4 of the previous year, along with a full analysis of the previous calendar year’s complete data set. Quarterly reports will also be issued in Q2, Q3 and Q4 of each year, which will present new data from the previous quarter. Information relating to HISA’s ADMC program will be released by the independent enforcement agency of the ADMC program, the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU), in accordance with a similar disclosure schedule. 

HISA’s initial release of information in the first quarter of 2024 will include data for all of calendar year 2023 concerning equine fatalities, registrations, fines assessed, track accreditation, and riding crop violations.  Additional RS metrics will be released as HISA’s level of confidence in reporting by Covered Persons and the ability to track and aggregate data improves. Beginning in 2024, HISA will also start regularly sharing meeting minutes for meetings of the HISA Board and its Standing Committees.

In addition to HISA’s regular reporting, beginning in the first quarter of 2024, individual requests for information may be submitted by contacting Mandy Minger, Director of Communications (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.917-846-8804).  HISA will respond to these requests on a case-by-case basis by taking into consideration whether there are privacy or confidentiality interests, ongoing investigations or pending litigation, or other circumstances that make public disclosure impractical or unfair to interested parties.   

FEI Tribunal issues Final Decisions in human anti-doping case

FEI Tribunal issues Final Decisions in human anti-doping case

The FEI Tribunal has issued its Final Decision in a human anti-doping case.  

This case involves an adverse analytical finding for Hydrochlorothiazide and its metabolite, Chloraminophenamide, which are included in the category of class “S5 - Diuretics and Masking Agents” according to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List.

A sample taken from the Argentinian athlete Fabian Sejanes (FEI ID 10001261) on 11 August 2022, during the FEI World Championships held in Herning, Denmark, from 5-14 August 2022, returned positive for the Prohibited Substance mentioned above. The athlete was notified of the violation of the FEI’s Anti-Doping Rules for Human Athletes (ADRHA) on 11 October 2022. 

In its Final Decision, the FEI Tribunal decided to suspend the athlete for a period of 18-months, starting from the date of the FEI Tribunal Final Decision (27 October 2023). Additionally, the athlete was disqualified from all results obtained at the event as well as all other competitive results obtained by the athlete from the date of his sample collection were disqualified.  Finally, the athlete was fined CHF 3,000 and asked to pay costs of CHF 1,500.

The parties can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) within 21 days of receipt of the decision.

The full text of the FEI Tribunal’s Final Decision is available here.

FEI Tribunal issues Final Decision for failure to submit sample collection

FEI Tribunal issues Final Decision for failure to submit sample collection

The FEI Tribunal has issued a Final Decision under the FEI Equine Anti-Doping Rules Article 2.3 for Evading, Refusing or Failing to Submit the horse to Sample Collection.

In this case, the athlete Ayedh Al Mughamer (FEI ID 10174065/KSA), failed to submit the horse Talaqah (FEI ID 108BA98/KSA), to the doping control station for a sample collection at the CEI1* 100 Riyadh (KSA), 10-11 February 2023. 

The horse was selected for a mandatory in-competition doping control test on 11 February following a positive hyposensitivity examination. The athlete refused the testing and left the event with the horse.  

In its final decision the FEI Tribunal imposed a two-year ineligibility period on the athlete from the date of the decision, the provisional suspension served by the athlete will be credited against the period of ineligibility. The athlete was also fined CHF 7,500 and asked to pay costs of CHF 2,000. Lastly, the results of the horse and athlete combination from the event will be disqualified.

The full Decision is available here.

Separately, the FEI has notified an alleged Equine Anti-Doping Rule Violation under the Equine Anti-Doping and Controlled Medication Regulations (EADCMRs). In this case, the athlete has been provisionally suspended until the decision of the FEI Tribunal and the horse has been provisionally suspended for two months.

Spot the signs of concussion and safely manage recovery with British racing’s new learning module

Spot the signs of concussion and safely manage recovery with British racing’s new learning module
  • Concussion learning module available now for free on Racing2Learn
  • Recommended for those in British racing working in horse-facing roles
  • Offers racing-specific guidance, underpinned by expert medical advice

British racing has today launched a new online concussion awareness learning module to help those working with and around horses spot the signs of concussion and return safely to work following a head injury.

Concussion is an injury to the brain that can occur after falling from a horse or after any impact to the head or body. It is the third most common injury for jockeys, but can happen to anyone in racing – on the racecourse, riding out on the gallops or even in the training yard.

Given the higher-risk nature of our sport, remaining at the forefront of concussion management is a priority for British racing, with education around how to recognise and recover from head injuries central to this approach.

The new learning module is available now on Racing2Learn and builds on existing medical advice and British racing’s robust jockey protocols to provide industry-specific concussion guidance to everyone working in horse-facing roles.

Developed by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) and funded by the Injured Jockeys Fund (IJF) and the Racing Foundation, the module helps participants:

  • Recognise how concussion looks and feels – and how to spot it in others
  • Remove a person with suspected concussion to a safe place and seek medical advice
  • Recover from concussion, allowing sufficient time for the brain to heal
  • Return safely and gradually to riding and horse-facing roles.

The guidance recommends taking time to rest and recover in the first 24-48 hours following a concussion, with minimal activity, reduced screen time, plenty of sleep and seeking medical support via NHS 111 or a GP if symptoms don’t start to settle.

It also advises against riding or any tasks that may result in head impact or injury for a minimum of 21 days following concussion, with the gradual return to activity helping reduce the risk of further injury or longer-term problems.

While aimed primarily at those working directly with horses, such as jockeys, trainers and stable employees, the advice is also applicable to those in support roles, like valets and racecourse teams, who may be well placed to help spot and help manage concussion in others.

Those taking the module will also have access to a suite of downloadable resources, which offer further guidance around symptoms, recovery, and rehabilitation, together with signposting to additional support services.

The guidance has been developed by medical experts and racing professionals in line with the UK Government’s grassroots sport guidelines, If in doubt, sit them out, so that it adheres to best practice health advice, while ensuring it is this relevant to managing concussion within the racing environment.

Jockeys and riders licensed by the BHA (amateurs and professionals) should note that while they are encouraged to complete the module to help improve their own understanding of concussion, their return to race riding following head injury will continue to be managed by the BHA Medical Department in partnership with the IJF.

Dr Jerry Hill, the BHA’s Chief Medical Adviser, said:

Given the risks associated with our sport, we take concussion very seriously and already have comprehensive protocols in place to ensure the highest standards of care, attention, and rehabilitation for our jockeys.

But concussion can happen anywhere, at any time, and this new learning module has been developed to enhance the way we support racing’s wider workforce, with industry-specific guidance on spotting the signs of concussion, managing recovery and the safe return to work.

This is an incredibly useful resource for anyone in British racing working with or around horses, which can help improve understanding of concussion and reduce the risk of serious injury. We are very grateful to the teams at the IJF and the Racing Foundation for making this possible.”

Lisa Hancock, Chief Executive of the Injured Jockeys Fund, said:

Our experience of supporting jockeys with concussion does highlight that prompt recognition of the signs and active management of the symptoms can really help aid recovery.

These guidelines are written to help protect the long-term health of any rider, jockey or anyone who works around horses who might have sustained a concussion injury.”

Tansy Challis, Chief Executive Officer of the Racing Foundation, said:

This new, online learning module demonstrates how proactive the racing industry is at ensuring it remains at the forefront of concussion management and at maintaining its reputation as a leader in the wider sporting context.

Given the risks associated with the racing environment, it’s crucial that everyone can recognise the signs of concussion as soon as possible and identify the most suitable recovery and rehabilitation pathways.

We hope that through this accessible and digestible way of learning about concussion, we will be able to reduce the risks both to individuals and those around them. We encourage everyone to complete the module on the free Racing2Learn platform.”

BHA confirms changes to the Rules of Racing

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  • All horses entered to run in a race in Britain must be signed out of the human food chain via its passport by 1 January 2022
  • Equine Influenza vaccination requirements updated, in line with other European racing nations
  • Rules regarding use of bisphosphonates updated, in line with European harmonised position

LawInSport Weekly News Recap - 24 September

LIS News Roundup

Welcome to LawInSport’s weekly News Roundup.  This recap highlights this week’s news pieces from across the world of sport. For further updates, please visit our news section.

We hope you find this useful. If you have any related questions or feedback, please don’t hesitate to contact us. 

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