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During 2014, 124 racehorses died on the track in Australia. Catching the most public attention were the two horses that died during the Melbourne Cup last year. These tragedies are a direct result of the way racehorses are treated, both on and off the track. Further to this, around 10,000 racehorses left the racing industry that year, to face an uncertain future. Many were slaughtered for canine or human consumption.

“A passionate group of around 30 people gathered to raise awareness about the plight of racehorses at the Hobart Cup on 9 February, 2015.

“Theirs was a voice for the many thousands of horses born into the racing industry. Each person carried a colour placard with messages and depictions of fallen, dying and dead horses, to remind racegoers of the brutality of this seemingly glamorous industry.” said Chris Simcox, spokesperson for Against Animal Cruelty Tasmania, and the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses.

An estimated 15,000 foals are born annually into the horse racing industry. At around 12 months of age they are put into training for a short life of racing. Only about 30 per cent of these young horses get to race, the rest mostly end up at the slaughterhouse.

Of those that do race, only a small percentage bring in enough prize money to be considered “successful”. Those that perform poorly are discarded like a broken toy and become part of the industry’s “wastage” problem.

“As long as people are ignorant of the facts, the exploitation of horses used for racing will keep occurring.

“Activists will continue to draw public attention to the suffering of racehorses. Horse are sentient beings, just as humans are, and they have the capacity to feel pain and to suffer.

“It is time for all humane beings to be a voice for the abused, and to speak up in the face of wrongs committed against non-humans.” said Mr Simcox.