Six Horses Dead at Cheltenham Festival in 2018
Six horses died at the 2018 Cheltenham Festival. Mossback lost his life after falling at around 5 pm on Tuesday, 13 March, 2018, and just 30 minutes later, Report to Base was also fatally injured. At around 2 pm on Friday, 16 March, 2018, Sandsend sustained a broken leg and was euthanised, and at around 5.30 pm on the same day, Dresden, Some Plan and North Hill Harvey all suffered fatal injuries.
Broken neck, backs, and legs are commonplace on the racing track, where horses are subjected to painful whipping in order to force them to run faster and jump higher than they naturally would. The stress on their bodies can lead to debilitating medical conditions, including bleeding lungs and gastric ulcers. Many are first raced when they are too young and haven’t fully developed, increasing the risk of injury and illness.
When horses get too old or stop performing well enough to be profitable, they’re often “retired” and sent to slaughter. Animal Aid estimates that around 1,000 horses from the racing industry are killed in abattoirs in Britain every year and turned into dog food or cheap meat. Others face horrific live-export journeys to Europe.
What You Can Do
Just as ITV broadcasts Cheltenham, the channel continues to show the Grand National, despite growing public awareness of the suffering of horses in the racing industry. Please send a message to ITV Chair Sir Peter Bazalgette and ask him to take this cruel event off our screens.