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    RADIO ROXI TIMELESS TUNES

Sports News

Nigel Farage wades in on new Grand National safety measures after Animal Rising disruption: ‘We’re giving in!’

today13/10/2023

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Nigel Farage has warned the Grand National will become “like any other jump race” should incremental changes continue be made in the name of safety.

It comes as the event announced a reduction from 40 to 34 horses after a death at the Aintree Festival earlier this year.


The Jockey Club announced the first cut in 40 years to the number of runners after the last event was marred by Animal Rising activists.

Speaking on GB News, Farage argued the horses are “trained” for the occasion, and they “love” competing in the Grand National.

Grand National protests and Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage has criticised new safety measures at the Grand National

PA / GB NEWS

“We understand there was a big review of the Grand National”, he said.

“They want to limit the number of horses from 40 to 34, they want to take the 11th fence down by a couple of inches, they want to pull the start line back so the horses aren’t going at the same pace to the first.

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“It seems to me that we’re introducing these because of the protests. It’s almost like we’re giving in.

“The Grand National is a global event.”

Former Grand National winning horse racing trainer Oliver Sherwood spoke to Farage about the developments, concurring with the former Brexit Party leader’s sentiments.

He argued that Animal Rising activists caused the “death” of the horse who perished at the most recent event, as they caused them to “boil over”.

\u200bFormer Grand National winning horse racing trainer Oliver Sherwood speaks to Nigel Farage

Former Grand National winning horse racing trainer Oliver Sherwood speaks to Nigel Farage

GB NEWS

“To lose any horse is bad, I’m adamant that most trainers in the industry that those people [Animal Rising] caused the death.

“Those animals are trained to the second, and some of them did boil over.”

There have been calls to reduce the line number of runners to 30, but Aintree clerk of the course Sulekha Varma said that could be a counter-productive move.

“We know from research papers and internal analysis of jump races that there is a direct correlation between the number of runners and the risk of falling, unseating or being brought down,” she said.

“However, we also must consider that reducing the field size by too great a number could create a faster race and have an adverse impact in terms of safety.”

Across the three-day National meeting in April, there were three equine fatalities with protesters from Animal Rising attempting to halt the race itself.

Racing chiefs claim the changes were not prompted as a result of the protests.

Merseyside Police said 118 people were arrested over the disruption and its investigation is ongoing, despite no charges being made as of yet.



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