Thursday, September 19, 2019Contact: Andrew Chesser
IFHA Conference to Feature Horse Welfare and the Public Perception of Racing

The 53rd International Conference of Horseracing Authorities, organized by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA), will be held on the 7th of October 2019 in Paris, France. Horse welfare and public perception will be the main focus of the Conference, while other subjects to be covered include a trainer’s panel on international racing experiences and individual presentations by IFHA member authorities in South Africa and Saudi Arabia.

Jim Gagliano, the president and chief operating officer of The United States Jockey Club as well as one of the co-chairmen of the IFHA, will introduce the main morning session comprising international racing. Media presenter Rishi Persad will then moderate a panel that will include trainer John Gosden (by pre-recorded interview), retired French trainer Criquette Head, Japanese assistant trainer Yoshitake Hashida, and Ezequiel Valle, a director for the Argentinian farm Haras Firmamento.

Following that panel, Ken Truter, the chairman for The National Horseracing Authority of Southern Africa, will showcase the planned 38th Asian Racing Conference, which will be held in Cape Town in February 2020. Additionally, there will be a presentation on the inaugural Saudi Cup.

During the afternoon sessions, horse welfare and public perception will take centerstage, and the keynote address will be given by Tracey Crouch, a member of parliament for Chatham and Aylesford in the United Kingdom as well as UK Sports Minister from 2015-18.

Nick Rust, the chief executive officer of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), will then lead a session on how equine welfare has changed in the past two decades, and a panel will take place featuring Dr. Rick Arthur, the equine medical director of the California Horse Racing Board; Brant Dunshea, the BHA’s chief regulatory officer; and Dr. Brian Stewart, the head of veterinary regulation, welfare, and biosecurity policy for the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

Following that panel, Richard Hytner, founder of Beta Baboon, will examine perspectives on the current consumer and political environment before moderating a panel featuring Head, Persad, and Victoria Carter, who is the deputy chairman of New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing. He will then lead another panel examining how horseracing jurisdictions can meet current challenges and ways the IFHA should be involved. Greg Nichols, the chairman of Racing Australia, and Craig Fravel, the outgoing president and CEO of Breeders’ Cup Ltd., will be among those taking part.

IFHA Chairman Louis Romanet will then provide the conference’s closing remarks.

A live video stream of the Open Forum of the International Conference of Horseracing Authorities will be available on the IFHA’s website.  A replay of the live video stream and presentations will be available in the days following the event.

The first International Conference of Horseracing Authorities was organized and hosted by the Société d'Encouragement in Paris, France, on October 9, 1967. Since 1994, the annual conference has been organized by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities at France Galop.
About IFHA

The International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) is the world peak body for the international sport of Thoroughbred racing. Its members are the national racing authorities across the globe which stage Thoroughbred races.

Major areas of the IFHA’s activities include:

    •           Making and amending the International Agreement on Breeding, Racing and Wagering (the IABRW)
    •           Policy development relating to welfare and safety of horses and riders
    •           International Race Planning and Grading (“black type”)
    •           World Rankings
    •           The fight against Equine Prohibited Substances and Practices
    •           Harmonization of Race Day Rules
    •           Certification of IFHA Reference Labs
    •           Fostering commercial development of the racing industry globally

The IFHA is a foundation member with Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) of the International Horse Sports Confederation and is affiliated to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

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