Members of the New York Senate Racing, Wagering and Gaming Committee heard four hours of testimony from 20 witnesses this week demonstrating the stark contrasts in the public's opinion of horse racing. The Daily Racing Form's Matt Hegarty reported that several witnesses called for an abolition of racing, while others focused on how much the sport has improved its safety record in New York.
Those who wanted to see the end of racing cited concerns about racing fatalities, overmedication, and particularly the industry's neutral stance on horse slaughter. Racing proponents pointed out the fatality rate in New York is down 32 percent from 2011, and questioned statistics brought up by the anti-racing speakers.
Veterinarians also appeared before the group, some of whom raised concerns about whether backstretch veterinarians are treating horses or simply taking orders from trainers requesting specific treatments.
According to the Form, the senators did not seem interested in banning racing. Two senators, Sen. Joseph Addabbo and Sen. Daphne Jordan, were present for the whole hearing, while two others listened to only parts of the testimony.
Read more at the Daily Racing Form
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