RIP Up For Review, Forest des Aigles and Crucial Role: Three Victims of Grand National Festival 2019

Posted by on April 6, 2019 | Permalink

With the Grand National festival on for yet another season, the death toll for horses subjected to the horrors of the horseracing industry continues to rise, now counting three deaths at this year’s festival alone. Forest des Aigles and Crucial Role have died after falling in different races during Ladies Day at the Grand National Festival 2019, and Up For Review died after fatal fall during Grand National race on Saturday.

More deaths are likely to follow, as fatal injuries such as broken legs and backs are common in horse racing.

The Victims

Up For Review
Crucial Role


Forest Des Aigles


The Grand National Race

At 4.5 miles, the headline Grand National steeplechase is one of the longest and most dangerous races in the world. The risk factor is what makes it famous, and every year, horses suffer, sustaining horrific and often fatal injuries at notorious fences such as The Chair, Becher’s Brook, and Canal Turn.

Last year, three horses lost their lives at the deliberately hazardous Aintree Racecourse, where the Grand National Festival takes place annually. And just last month, three horses were killed during the Cheltenham Festival.

How Horses Suffer in Racing

Horses bred for greed and speed are pushed beyond their natural abilities and forced to run at breakneck pace. Those who don’t sustain horrific injuries from crashing face-first onto the track may still suffer heart attacks, bleed from their lungs, or develop painful ulcers and other health problems that come only from being pushed to the breaking point for human amusement.

©Liss Ralston

Trainers and even veterinarians have been known to administer drugs – both legal and illegal – to horses. In some cases, this is done to mask pain so that animals who should be recuperating from injuries run with them instead, making them much worse.

A Survivor’s ‘Life’ After Racing

Even those who make it off the track alive often don’t live happily ever after. Every year, thousands of horses – including spent thoroughbreds and those who don’t “make the grade” – are discarded like used betting slips.

Many are abandoned, neglected, or sold for slaughter, their flesh ending up either in dog or cat food or as “prime cuts” for human consumption in Europe and Asia.


What You Can Do for Horses

ITV is broadcasting the Grand National, even though this cruel event is fatal for horses. Please send a message to the channel’s chair, Sir Peter Bazalgette, asking him to take the Grand National off our screens.