BHA launches code of conduct for syndicates
The BHA is hoping that it can provide greater protection and transparency for members of ownership syndicates with the launch of a new code of conduct.
The code, officially unveiled on Wednesday, sets out the basic requirements syndicators must meet, although it does not define how they will operate.
Those requirements include the provision of an agreement in which details relating to the duration and costs of the syndicate are all outlined, along with how decisions should be made and when financial statements will be circulated.
It will also become a requirement that all syndicators become registered owners in their own right, ensuring that they are subject to the rules of racing.
The code is a response to the growth of syndicate ownership and it will be the first time the rules of racing will include specific protection for syndicate members.
Trainers have voiced concerns about syndicates who take money from members but then do not pay for horses or training fees.
The code will be incorporated into the rules of racing when the BHA introduces modernised registration structures in the spring, aimed at simplifying the administration of racehorse ownership
The BHA has said it aims to increase ownership and have 1,000 more horses in training by 2020 under its Strategy for Growth.
BHA chief operating officer Richard Wayman said: "As syndication continues to grow it is vital structures are in place to protect and build confidence among both new and existing syndicate members.
"The recent national racehorse owners survey highlighted that syndicates were a common place for many people to start their ownership journey and, if the sport is to better retain racehorse owners, it is crucial everyone joining syndicates understand how their ownership will operate."
That survey was carried out by the Racehorse Owners Association, whose chief executive Charlie Liverton added: "The results of the survey reinforced how many people start their ownership journey in a syndicate, and the code of conduct will form a vital set of rules helping to protect all parties."