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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. 

Result of an Enquiry (K. Lundie) heard by the Disciplinary Panel on Thursday 26 August 2021

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1. On 26 August 2021 the independent Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) convened to consider whether Mr Kevin Lundie, a licensed professional flat jockey, was in breach of Rule (K)49 (a jockey must ensure that no Banned Substance is present in their body) and/or Rule (L)5.2 (where an approved person requires a person to attend an interview the person must attend the interview at the agreed time and place).

David Loughnane - Rule (E)12, fast-tracked

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£750 fine - A breach of Rule (E)12 of the Rules of Racing in that on 29 June 2021 FOREVER BRIGHT (IRE) ran in The Peter Villars Sportsground Maintenance Restricted Maiden Stakes (Class 5) at Chepstow, where it had been reported by the Veterinary Officer that the horse appeared to be suffering from ringworm.  The skin scrapings taken from FOREVER BRIGHT (IRE) were reported by Rossdales Laboratories as being positive for ringworm.

Maurice Barnes - Rule (D)30, fast-tracked

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£290 fine - A breach of Rule (D)30 of the Rules of Racing in that notification of the wind surgery undergone by FISHER GREEN (IRE) had not been notified to the Racing Calendar Office until after declarations prior to the horse running at Hexham on 20 June 2021.

BHA Disciplinary - Brian Ellison - Rule (K)1, fast-tracked

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£1,000 fine - A breach of Rule (K)1 of the Rules of Racing in that a post-race urine sample taken from DEFINITLY RED (IRE) on 29 February 2020 following its run in the William Hill Leading Racecourse Bookmaker Premier Chase at Kelso tested positive for triamcinolone acetonide.

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

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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.

BHA Disciplinary - Kim Bailey, Rule (D)11, fast-tracked

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£1,000 – Kim Bailey - breach of Rule (D)11 of the Rules of Racing in that on 31 March 2021 SUBWAY SURF (IRE) was due to run in the Join RacingTV Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Race (Class 4) at Ludlow Racecourse.  After arriving at Ludlow the horse was scanned into the stable yard, during which the Equine Welfare and Integrity Officer noticed a substance around SUBWAY SURF (IRE)’s mouth and the Veterinary Officer was informed.  Following the report, a bag and lorry search was carried out and two unlabelled 50ml syringes containing an unidentifiable brown liquid were found.  One syringe was full, the other was empty, but with the brown liquid residue still within.  His representative explained to the Veterinary Officer that she had witnessed the horse being administered one of the syringes by one of the Head Lads either before or as the horse was being loaded to travel on the morning of the race.  Furthermore, she explained that the substance was ‘Pullman Pro’ and the horse was due to be administered the second syringe after the race.  

Bloodstock Industry Forum publishes Code of Practice

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The Bloodstock Industry Forum (BIF) is pleased to announce the completion of the new Bloodstock Industry Code of Practice which will be formally incorporated into the rules of British Racing on August 16th and replaces the previous Bloodstock Industry Code of Practice which has been in place since in 2009 and the ITBA Sales Code of Practice, operational since 2010. The new Code of Practice has been drawn up in response to the central recommendation made in the BHA Review of the Buying and Selling of Bloodstock and Racehorses in British Racing which was released in December 2019.

Nicky Henderson - Rule (E)12, fast-tracked

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£750 fine - A breach of Rule (E)12 of the Rules of Racing in that on 5 July 2021 LELANTOS (IRE) ran in The Free Tips Daily On Handicap Hurdle Race (Class 5) at Worcester, where it had been reported by the Veterinary Officer that the horse appeared to be suffering from ringworm.  The skin scrapings taken from LELANTOS (IRE) were reported by Rossdales Laboratories as being positive for ringworm.

Pam Sly - Rule (D)28, fast-tracked

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£200 fine - A breach of Rule (D)28 of the Rules of Racing in that when DARK SPEC ran at Beverly on 19 July 2021 she had not informed the Racing Calendar Office that the horse had been gelded before the deadline as required

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