Like all racing jurisdictions throughout the country, Racing Victoria (RV) is committed to equine welfare. A new program launched in July last year called RESET aims to provide direct support for ex-racehorses that have not been successful in their transition to a second career outside racing.
RV launched the RESET program to complement their acknowledged retrainer network, and the organisation’s General Manager – Equine Welfare, Jennifer Hughes is optimistic that this addition is already increasing the options for ex-racehorses to find good homes and useful lives once their track days are done.
“The program’s name is an acronym of what we are trying to do with the program, as it stands for Racehorse Evaluation, Support, Education and Transition, and aims to ‘reset’ the stigma around these horses,” said Hughes.
It can also be linked to the horse Lloyd Williams once owned a multiple Group 1-winning galloper called Reset, who retired from stallion duties last year] as well, so it works on various levels.
RESET is an evolution of an existing system, Hughes explains. “It is designed to maximise opportunities for all horses, not just those easy to rehome.”
“Previously, our post-racing approach was reliant upon our acknowledged retrainers to take on retiring racehorses at their own cost. This naturally biased our efforts towards the horses that were easy to sell on, or to retrain and find new homes for. That’s understandable, as they are running a business.”
Well, it worked, but only up to a point – which is why she and her colleagues sought to build upon it.