Outcry after shocking TV documentary, and other things the equestrian world is talking about

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  • Investigation under way after shocking documentary

    Operations at Ireland’s only equine abattoir, Shannonside Foods in Co. Kildare, have been suspended following the broadcast of a shocking investigation by RTÉ. The RTÉ Investigates documentary, “Horses – Making a Killing”, aired on 12 June showing horrifying scenes of brutal treatment of horses kept in appalling conditions, plus a total systemic failure that puts human safety at risk. Part of the programme featured covert recordings showed instances of a horse having markings changed with spray paint, of what appeared to be re-microchipping, and horrific treatment of equines at a holding site connected to the abattoir.

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    Hickstead champion to miss the Derby

    David Simpson and Pjotr van de Kruishoeve in the 2023 Hickstead Derby

    David Simpson riding Pjotr van de Kruishoeve in the 2023 Hickstead Derby.

    Showjumping fans will be disappointed not to see last year’s Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby winners David Simpson and Pjotr Van De Kruishoeve on Sunday (23 June) after the stallion was ruled out owing to a mild viral infection. David said: “It’s such bad timing, but welfare is paramount to me, and my horse has to come first. I was so looking forward to trying to defend my title, but the Al Shira’aa Derby is a huge challenge – it’s twice as long as any other showjumping course, with 21 jumping efforts – so horses need to be at the peak of fitness.”

    Find out who else will be in the running for the title

    Are you ready for Royal Ascot?

    Royal Ascot enclosures ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 19: Top hats on show on Day Five of the Royal Ascot Meeting at Ascot Racecourse on June 19, 2021 in Ascot, England. A total of twelve thousand racegoers made up of owners and the public are permitted to attend the meeting due to it being an Events Research Programme (ERP) set up by the Government due to the Coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images)

    Five days of top-class Flat racing are in store at Royal Ascot (18-22 June) with a star-studded cast of horses and jockeys to look forward to seeing in action. If you aren’t able to attend in person, there will be over seven hours’ live footage on the main ITV channel as ITV Racing will be covering five races on each day of the five-day meeting, plus additional coverage on ITV4. We’ve caught up with racing experts to find out who they will be backing each day, so if you’re looking for some tips, we’ve got you covered.

    Royal Ascot tips from the experts

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