News Releases

Thursday, March 13, 2008Contact: Bob Curran Jr. (212) 521-5326
Second Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit
to Kick Off with Session Open to the Public

The second Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit will convene more than 60 industry representatives for wide-ranging discussions of critical equine health- and safety-related issues at the Keeneland Sales Pavilion on Monday, March 17, and Tuesday, March 18.

The summit, coordinated and underwritten by The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and hosted by Keeneland Association, will begin at 8 a.m. on March 17 with a five-hour session that is open to the public. The open session will feature:

• Progress reports from the six committees formed coming out of the original summit in October 2006: On-Track Injury Reporting, Shoeing and Hoof Care, Education and Licensing, Race Conditions, Racing Surfaces and Durability.

• Presentations on non-catastrophic injuries, racing surfaces analysis, potential factors in on-track injuries and the Groom Elite Program.

• A track superintendents’ panel.

• Updates on the Equine Drug Research Institute, Racing Medication and Testing Consortium and the Sales Integrity Task Force.

On Monday afternoon, the working groups established following the original summit in October 2006 will meet individually to discuss welfare and safety issues in breakout sessions.

On Tuesday morning, new working groups will be established to formulate action plans for critical issues spotlighted the day before. That session will last from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.

A press release detailing highlights of the summit will be issued shortly thereafter.

“The original summit raised awareness of an increasingly serious problem facing our industry — the decline in the durability and soundness of our racing horses — and offered an opportunity to develop an industry-wide response to begin to confront the issue,” said Ed Bowen, president of Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation. “We look forward to hearing about the progress that has been made in the ensuing 17 months while gaining additional insights into different areas of consideration from new presenters and participants.”

The strategic plan and recommendations that came out of the original summit, presentations, research articles, committee updates, and other information can be found on the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit website,

Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation is the nation’s leading private source of equine medical research funding. During the last 25 years, the foundation has underwritten 239 projects at 35 universities for more than $15.5 million.