The Grand National meeting at Aintree suffered its second fatality today as the Little Josh, ridden by Sam Twiston-Davies, had to be put down after fracturing his shoulder.
The Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained gelding parted company with his jockey in the extended two-mile-five-furlong event, run over the Grand National course.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/racing/article-2304605/Little-Josh-dies-Grand-National-meeting-day-one.html#ixzz2PdB2fD50
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TRAGEDY STRIKES AT YET ANOTHER GRAND NATIONAL 2012
The Grand National today continued to epitomise callous disregard for the animals who are forced into this abusive activity. Traditionally known as the 'Sport of Kings', this kind of horse racing is now clearly an embarrassment to a nation that prides itself on fair treatment of animals. Neptune Collonges won the race, and thousands of people got excited about winning some money on their bets, but how can any of this be worth the death of two magnificent sentient creatures ? Synchronised and According to Pete fell at the infamous Becher’s Brook fence that has caused the death of several horses in the past. Death rates in the Grand National are higher than the average steeplechase. None of these animals have a choice - they are forced into this punishing regime in conditions which amount to slavery.
This is another example of 'tradition' being used to justify behaviour which is no longer acceptable. In this gruelling four and a half mile course with thirty fences, over the last 12 years, 20 horses have died on the day, and many more in the first week after the race.
One might imagine that after the world-wide success of the play and film "WarHorse", that it would now be apparent to everyone that these wonderful creatures have feelings and are worthy of respect. But in this 'sport', horses are treated as a commodity. Around 18,000 are bred into the ever-decreasing gene pool of the racing industry each year and evidence shows around 5000 are raced to death. Just over 7000 make the grade; the rest are destroyed or cast aside, many ending up in degrading horse markets, on their way to being used as food. During the actual races, the horses who have survived the system are openly beaten for human pleasure. As soon as they stop being money-earners, they are discarded - many destroyed on the spot.
In 2012 this kind of treatment is utterly unacceptable. The industry has become a cruel factory farm for human financial profit.
How many more horses have to die in this outmoded entertainment ? There are plenty of other things to gamble on … including all the Olympic events soon to be played out in London.
It is time for Britain to stand up, set an example of decency to the world - and consign this barbaric sport to history.