Blog: Ignorance…Is Not Always Bliss

Amy Rees

Every year, the Melbourne Cup sees people from all around the world congregate to Flemington, where the best of the best horses are ridden by the best of the best jockeys and cheered on by hundreds of thousands of people, wearing the best of the best designer wear.

The hype surrounding the biggest horse racing event in the country – and even the world – is massive. Millions of dollars are made annually, not to mention the stakes won by the lucky, successful owners on the day. Unfortunately, however, all of the excitement and joy that the Melbourne Cup brings millions of people each year, is always dampened by the negativity that animal activists bring pre and post-race.

Photo: Jeff Griffith on Unsplash

Yes, there is no denying that horses sustain injuries. It is the downfall to ANY competitive sport. Even kids ponies in the paddock at home can sustain injuries let alone an elite athlete competing in the highest stakes races that there are. I use the term ‘athlete’ with 100% conviction, because that’s exactly what they are. Just like our footy stars, soccer stars, tennis stars – the list goes on – race horses train to compete and compete to win… it’s in their blood. And just like our sporting stars, some do sustain injuries.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion – we live in a democracy. However, if any of these vocal animal activists spent one week at a major training facility, then they might develop different views. I think that the biggest issue is ignorance, they simply just don’t know. They don’t know how much money is spent on race horses, how much care goes into them and how loved they truly are. You won’t find a trainer who won’t attest to that.

‘Ignorance is bliss’ is not always the case. In fact, if the world was a little less ignorant before they opened their mouths, then we may live in a more compatible world.