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Turf Club Announce 2007 Racing Statistics

Turf Club Announce 2007 Racing Statistics

The Turf Club today announced the Integrity Racing Statistics for 2007.

The main statistics cover Racecourse Stewards Enquiries, Appeals Body and Referral Committee hearings, drug/alcohol testing of riders, drug testing of horses, licenses issued, non-runners, medical statistics, handicap ratings and off-times.

The key statistics are as follows:

• Appeals Body and Referral Committee hearings were lower at 33 mainly due to a decrease in the number of prohibited substance cases dealt with.  The 2006 figures for prohibited substance included 6 cases that related to morphine which originated in 2002.  The Appeals Body dealt with 13 cases of which three were chaired by the Independent Chairman Ronan Keane.

• 62 Riders were drug tested and all samples were negative.  In total 337 riders have been tested since testing was introduced in 2003 and there has been only one positive test.

• Alcohol breath testing of riders was introduced in June 2007 and 515 riders were tested at 10 meetings during the remainder of 2007.  There was one positive test.

• 2,845 horses were dope tested and there were 6 positive samples.

• The number of apprentice licences issued increased by 24% and there was a 290% increase in the number of apprentices signed on for the first time.

• The number of stable employees registered increased by 7.4% to 3,519. 

• The injury rate per fall for National Hunt racing fell to 14.8% - its lowest level in 5 years.

Commenting on the figures, Turf Club Chief Executive Denis Egan said that “the most significant figure is the 290% increase in the number of apprentices indentured for the first time”.  He said that the figure is most welcome in view of the big drop in this category last year.  He also said that of the 29 apprentices indentured for the first time that 11 have already ridden their first winner on the track which augured well for the future. 

Referring to the introduction of alcohol breath testing, Denis Egan noted that 515 tests were carried out in 2007 with one positive result being returned.  He said that “on any day when testing takes place all riders are breathalysed”.  He also said that he was please to report that “all samples taken under the drug testing of riders programme were negative”.

Commenting on the medical statistics Denis Egan said that the injury rate per fall decreased across the board which reflected positively on the standard of safety equipment now in use.  In relation to dehydration he noted that only one rider was stood down during the Flat racing season which again highlights the success of the raising of the weights in 2006.  However he expressed disappointment at the increase in the number of National Hunt riders stood down for this reason which went up to 7 from 4.  He said that this once again highlights the number of jockeys that are abusing the sauna.  In conclusion he noted that 63 jockeys had attended the Professional Development Courses at RACE and that the feedback was positive.

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