NEWS RELEASE – 15 October 2017

For immediate release


The death of a stable employee last night at Kempton Park Racecourse is a tragedy that touches all in racing. Reactions across the sport testify to the close bonds that unite us in our common passion and from the National Trainers Federation, we send our condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of the deceased.

Mercifully, fatal accidents in the course of caring for racehorses in Britain are rare and we acknowledge and salute the commitment of stable employees across the country who devote their working lives to their horses.

Since last night we have been advising and supporting the trainer and the team at the yard.

British horseracing is fortunate to have an excellent support system for its people and this is at the disposal of anyone in times of need. The 24-hour Racing Support Line can be contacted on 0800 6300 443.


The National Trainers Federation represents the interests of British licensed racehorse trainers.

For more information, please contact Rupert Arnold, NTF Chief Executive, on 01488 71794 or 07899 797010. E-mail:

For more information on the National Trainers Federation, please go to

NTF responds to BHA announcement on new stewarding model

Commenting on today’s British Horseracing Authority announcement of plans for a new model for stewarding in British racing, Rupert Arnold, NTF Chief Executive, said

“To date the NTF has not been asked to provide stakeholder input so we look forward to the consultation in which we will be able to examine in more detail the BHA’s proposals and justification for a different stewarding model. Our initial reaction is that replacing the volunteer stewards with salaried stewards will mean the loss of a valuable source of impartial opinion in stewards’ decisions. We believe the volunteer stewards’ more independent perspective leads to a balanced outcome in enquiries.”



Promoting ‘The Horse Comes First’ at Epsom Open Day and Newmarket Open Weekend

The NTF is a supporter of The Horse Comes First, an industry-wide initiative which many trainers will be familiar with. The Horse Comes First promotes and raises awareness of the high standards of equine welfare in the sport. The initiative aims to improve understanding of the care given to our horses throughout and after their careers in racing.

The Epsom Trainers’ Open Day on Monday 28th August and Newmarket Open Weekend on Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th September are great opportunities for trainers to engage with The Horse Comes First and share the positive messaging about the high levels of welfare with visitors to yards. Here’s how trainers can get involved.

HCF logo

British Racing has a track record to be proud of: British Racing is among the world’s best regulated animal activities. The sport employs over 6,000 people to provide care and attention for the 14,000 horses in training, providing them with a level of care and a quality of life that is virtually unsurpassed by any other domesticated animal.

British Racing has a duty of care to its horses: Since the year 2000, British Racing has invested £32 million in veterinary research and education.

British Racing is open and transparent: Within the last 20 years, the equine fatality rate in British Racing has fallen by one-third, from 0.3% to 0.2% of runners.

Further information and messaging from The Horse Comes First can be found on its website ( and we welcome you to share the messaging as you show visitors around your yards.



NTF & NASS to sign Mental Health Charter to mark Mental Health Awareness Week

The National Trainers Federation (NTF) and National Association of Stable Staff (NASS) are using Mental Health Awareness Week to join other horseracing organisations in signing the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation.

Through the initiative of the British Horseracing Authority, Professional Jockeys Association and Racing Welfare, there is a growing recognition that mental health is as important as physical health in a sport that values the wellbeing of its participants.

Now the organisations representing employers and employees, who work so closely together producing the sport’s equine athletes, are joining other stakeholders to support and reinforce the key messages of the Mental Health Charter.

The NTF and NASS welcome the activities planned by the horseracing industry in Mental Health Awareness Week and look forward to collaborating in the working group organised by the BHA later this year.

Speaking for the NTF, Chief Executive Rupert Arnold said, “I am delighted the NTF will be part of racing’s collective efforts to support the mental health of people in the sport. As partners in the National Joint Council for Stable Staff, the NTF and NASS are coming together to sign the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation to demonstrate our shared interests.”

George McGrath, Chief Executive of the National Association of Stable Staff said, “The staff working in a racing yard will experience the greatest highs but equally they will experience lows. As in many walks of life, when things are going well you have plenty of friends but when times get harder you can often feel alone. As such, NASS welcomes the opportunity to sign up to the Mental Health Charter along with the other stakeholders in the British horseracing industry.”

Matt Mancini, Retention Development Manager of the British Horseracing Authority commented, “We are delighted that the NTF and NASS join the BHA, PJA and Racing Welfare as signatories to the Mental Health Charter. Together British racing is showing its commitment to raising awareness and tackling head on the stigma attached to mental health issues. The sport is also carrying out a series of activities throughout mental health awareness week to further educate our participants about the help that is available to them.”

Many to thank for achieving the new levy legislation

Today marks the start of a ‘new levy’ era. The central funding of British horseracing will be governed by the Horserace Betting Levy Regulations 2017, doing away with the outmoded framework of the 1961 legislation.

There is still a risk of legal challenge but the tone of the BHA’s announcement doesn’t quite capture the significance of the moment. It begins

British racing today hailed an important milestone as the Levy Board announced that new legislation will take effect from 25 April 2017 to capture a return from all betting operators accepting bets on the sport by British bettors. This is one of a number of key enablers required to ensure the long term-health and growth of the country’s second biggest spectator sport which supports more than 85,000 jobs.”

For anyone involved in one or more of the previous attempts to reform or replace the 1961 levy, the passing into law of the new regulations is more than a milestone. It is the culmination of not just years but decades of work. The composition of racing’s revenue streams may have altered in that time with the growth in media rights but levy income remains the bedrock, especially for horsemen.

With disappointment the more usual outcome in the past, now is a good time to celebrate this achievement and thank all those who contributed. Within the BHA Steve Harman, Nick Rust and Will Lambe deserve huge credit. Whenever an obstacle appeared, they found a way round it. Racecourse and horsemen’s leaders have also played key roles. Friends of racing in various guises answered the call at crucial moments. Letters were written to Ministers and MPs lobbied from across the racing community. Politicians of all colours and in both Houses have listened to British racing and put their weight behind reform; so let’s pay a special tribute to Minister for Sport, Tourism and Heritage Tracey Crouch, whose signature brought the legislation to life, and to current Secretary of State, Karen Bradley.

The increased receipts from the Levy will ensure that the central funding which is crucial to the sport will continue to support:

  • Racing’s grassroots – improving prize money for participants to allow them to maintain their involvement in the sport, keep horses in training and improve the racing product
  • Jobs – help recruitment, retention and growth of jobs in racing and in the rural economy
  • Small businesses – by supporting the growth of the sport, help the future of small businesses such as farriers, vets, feed and equipment suppliers and many others
  • High standards of integrity in British racing – including anti-doping and anti-corruption measures
  • Participant welfare and training – including initiatives to support the mental and physical wellbeing of participants, and education and training opportunities for young people to become involved in the sport
  • The wider British horse sector – through veterinary science research and education funding, disease surveillance, and support for rare breeds societies

Notice to all buyers of Plus 10 registered 2yos at upcoming breeze-up sales

There is a two-week post-sale registration allowance for Plus 10 horses sold at breeze up sales.

This allowance provides for the new owner of a horse to pay the final Plus 10 registration fee to qualify their purchase to win a £10,000 (€12,5000) bonus should their horse go on to win a Plus 10 race.

About 600 two and three-year-old races staged in Britain and Ireland this year will feature a Plus 10 bonus. The Plus 10 bonus scheme has paid out in excess of £8 million to owners, breeders, trainers, jockeys and stable staff in just two years of bonus racing.

The presence of a Plus 10 logo on a horse’s pedigree page in a breeze-up catalogue will indicate a horse is entered into Plus 10. To confirm if the Owner Registration is required to be paid, search the horse’s details on the Eligible Horses page of the Plus 10 website, or contact 020 7152 0026 or

Owners and trainers should also note a rule change announced earlier this year which limits the number of £10,000 bonuses a Plus 10 qualified horses can win to one. The rule was introduced after the number of races the scheme covered in 2016 expanded from 550 races to 600 races. This was the result of racecourses upgrading races to qualify for a bonus, races dividing due to large field sizes, and taking into account the impact of many more novice contests for two-year-olds following changes to the race programme.


2017 Industry roadshows: One voice on the future of British racing

York Racecourse Mon 27 February; Musselburgh Racecourse Tues 28 February; Cheltenham Racecourse Thurs 2 March; Newmarket Rowley Mile Racecourse Fri 3 March

Each event takes place between 10.30am and 1.30pm followed by an informal lunch


While we fully understand the many competing demands on your time, the events do provide a good opportunity to hear direct from the leaders of the BHA, the Racecourse Association and the Horsemens’ Group on important news and developments affecting you and our sport. Issues covered will include progress against racing’s growth strategy, the very latest on the implementation of the new levy, the fixture list, what is being done to support the recruitment, retention and development of employees and plans to grow our sport and market it to a wider audience.

Presenters will include Nick Rust, Chief Executive of the BHA, Stephen Atkin, Chief Executive of the RCA, Philip Freedman, Executive Chairman of the Horsemen’s Group and Rod Street, Chief Executive of Great British Racing, all of whom will also be on a ‘Question Time’ panel with others to answer your questions and to listen to what you have to say.


The event is being promoted widely to other participants, including owners, as well as racecourses and the usual industry bodies. An informal networking lunch will be provided once the event closes at 1.30pm, should you be able to stay.

2017 is an important year for racing, and these events will ensure you are well informed about things that affect you, as well as give you a voice in the future direction of British racing.

Places are limited to 200 (100 at Musselburgh) and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To reserve your place, please email stating the event that you wish to attend by Wednesday 15 February. You can also register a place for other members of your team or an owner. Please also look out for an invitation and full agenda which will follow in the next couple of weeks.

If you have any questions please contact Laura Bewick on 0207 152 0174 or Sheena Coffey on 0207 152 0029.