The deaths this week of jockeys Caitlin Forrest and Carly-Mae Pye have sent the Australian racing world reeling, and have many in the industry calling for an across-the-board safety review.
Australian Hall of Fame trainer Lee Freedman told the Herald Sun that the deaths of the two riders, which makes now makes five in the last two years, was a “human disaster”. Freedman said he believed that the Aussie racing style of “tight, competitive, ‘macho’ riding” had to change, or more deaths would occur.
Jockey Caitlin Forrest, 19, died Wednesday in a four-horse spill at Murray Bridge. Carly-Mae Pye, 26, died Monday in an accident at Rockhampton.
Freedman also called for mandatory pre-race vet checks of all horses, and a reduction in field sizes. However, some of the nation’s top jockeys, such as Kerrin McEvoy and Chris Munce believe pre-race vet checks would be “a step too far”.
Mandatory vet checks would “open up a can of worms,” Melbourne jockey Katelyn Mallyon told the Herald Sun. “I’ve ridden very sound horses who have come out and snapped legs. It’s just the nature of the beast,” she said.
Read more in the Herald Sun.