The British Horseracing Authority has launched a somewhat controversial review of bloodstock sales practices amid allegations of unethical behavior, reports racingpost.com. According to chief executive Nick Rust's Aug. 4 letter to industry stakeholders, the BHA is “concerned about evidence of unsatisfactory experiences for owners and prospective owners, who are one of the two major sources of funding within our sport.”
This review has not been well-received by Horseman's Group chairman Philip Freedman, nor by sales companies Tattersalls and Goffs, both quick to emphasize sales ring propriety. Tattersalls has a meeting scheduled with the BHA for further discussion.
On Tuesday, the BHA released the following statement:
“It is agreed among the sport's leaders that if racing is to grow we need to ensure openness, transparency and fair dealing is at the heart of all we do or we may risk turning away existing and potential investors into the sport. The ownership and purchasing process is no exception to this.
“We believe the majority of individuals involved in the buying or selling of horses will be operating within the bounds of the code of conduct. However, the BHA has received some concerns that there may be a small minority who are not.
“The code of practice has been in place for 13 years now and we are of the view it is the right time for the sport to engage in a conversation about its sales practices (whether through sales houses or privately) and consider whether there needs to be any change to the regulatory landscape to ensure fair and transparent practices in this area.
“To this end, the BHA is currently involved in a pre-consultation with a small number of leaders in this part of our industry that is designed to gather more views which will help shape any review into this topic. We are pleased with the constructive nature of our engagement to date.”
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