19th December 2019

Today the BHA issued a notification to all trainers, by e mail, of ‘several minor changes to the rules of racing which will take effect from 20 January 2020’.

One reads: “UPDATE TO RULE (L) 53

Disqualified persons

Rule (L) 53 has been updated to clarify that a Disqualified Person may not be involved in any way with a horse that has ever been subject to the Rules of Racing, unless the BHA directs otherwise”

Am I reading this wrongly? It seems to me that the BHA is saying that a disqualified person cannot be involved in any way with a horse that has ever been in training or ‘subject to the rules of racing’. With other moves they are making, this might include most thoroughbred foals born and registered with Weatherbys.

Are they really trying to say that a person who has been disqualified under the rules of racing can’t own, lease, borrow or otherwise be involved with an ex-racehorse for the purpose of hunting, showjumping, eventing, or even hacking. That is what it sounds like but surely that is too ridiculous for even the most enthusiastic bureaucrat at High Holborn to think they have the power to do that.

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