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Your questions answered following the release of the Cheltenham review

The Cheltenham Festival: subject of a wide-ranging review following the fatalities at this year's meeting
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Why did the BHA carry out a review into the 2018 Cheltenham Festival?

There were six equine fatalities during the four-day meeting in March, something BHA chief regulatory officer Brant Dunshea described as "simply unacceptable". A seventh horse, Melrose Boy, who picked up an injury in the Martin Pipe, was euthanised in April due to complications from surgery.

What did the review cover?

Six broad categories including the courses; obstacles; participant factors; starts; safety factors and race tempo; programming and race conditions; and veterinary histories and protective measures. All races run at the festival from 2008 to 2018 were analysed.

Who carried out the review?

Dunshea led the review with the assistance of the BHA's director of equine health and welfare David Sykes, head of racecourse operations Emma Marley, Dr Sarah Rosanowski, an assistant professor in evidence-based veterinary medicine, and a number of BHA departments.

Why are there as many recommendations?

The BHA concluded that no single factor was "definitively responsible" for the fatalities and could therefore not recommended "an all-encompassing action or sweeping solution".

What happens next?

The recommendations will be further developed into an action plan by February 2019, the implementation of which will be required by the BHA, working with Cheltenham, Jockey Club Racecourses and others.


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