The safety and welfare of horses and jockeys is paramount at Chelmsford City Racecourse and nowhere is this better demonstrated than in the improvements made to the all-weather racing surface.

The key enhancements have been to rewax the surface to a higher standard and adding fibre to the blend to minimise kickback. Soon after opening there was also works to remove the pedestrian crossing over the track, replacing it with an underpass directly from the ticket office onto the concourse. These works have created a safer race track for the horses, and also a safer course for racegoers.

Three specifically qualified equine vets are on duty every race day at Chelmsford, dedicated to the welfare of all the horses. During each race, vets follow the runners by car and can respond to and attend a casualty generally within a minute – as fast as the paramedic teams responsible for human casualties.

There are two equine ambulances on course at all times and three ambulances for any incidents involving injuries to jockeys.

Chelmsford’s two permanent veterinary boxes are supplemented with an X-Ray machine for the major meetings to assist with swift diagnosis before administration of treatment on site or any movement necessary to equine hospitals. Copious supplies of water and multiple washdowns are also provided through the site to ensure horses are able to cool down properly straight after their race.

Chelmsford City Racecourse are proud to support The Horse Comes First, a campaign run by leading organisations in British Horseracing to raise awareness of the high standards of equine welfare in the sport. The Horse Comes First aims to improve the understanding of the care given to our horses throughout and after their careers in racing.

British Racing is among the world’s best regulated animal activities. The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) is the Government recognised body responsible for the regulation of horseracing. Together with the RSPCA and World Horse Welfare, it is a leading signatory of the National Equine Welfare Protocol.

British Racing’s own self-imposed and enforced welfare standards far exceed existing national animal welfare legislation and among a population estimated to be around 1 million, racehorses in Britain are among the healthiest and best looked after 2% of horses in the country.

The sport employs over 6,000 people to provide first class care and attention for the 14,000 horses in training and British Racing is committed to providing the best possible standards of veterinary care for its horses and has invested, via the Levy Board, over £32 million since 2000 in Veterinary Research and Education.

For more information, the sports equine welfare policy can be found at:

Learn more about Chelmsford City Racecourse's Senior Racecourse Veterinary Surgeon, Mark Murrell, by clicking here.


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