What: Protest at Wellington Cup 2024
When: Tomorrow – 11am Saturday 20th January 2024
Where: Front entrance – Wellington Racing Club, Racecourse Road, Trentham
Activists from the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses (CPR) and Wellington Vegan Actions will gather outside the main entrance of the Wellington Cup with props that symbolise the blood that is shed on the racetrack.
“We will be there to stand up for the horses, who are forced to literally run for their lives,” said CPR NZ spokesperson Melody Willis.
In the last racing year in New Zealand 17 horses lost their lives on the racetrack. These are only the deaths that can be confirmed, as many hundred additional horses sustained injuries that could have caused these horses to be killed afterwards.
NZ stats of the last racing year (Aug 2022 – July 2023):
- 17 horses died
- 378 excessive whip use
- 278 horses that showed signs of stress and agitation
- 308 total injuries
- 119 serious injuries
- 35 horses bleeding from the nose
These stats are extracted from the Steward Reports after each race by CPR, as they are not otherwise made public by the racing industry.
At the Wellington Cup protest on Saturday, activists will create a powerful visual display by wearing and using various props to demonstrate to racegoers the abuse that takes place inside and to plant the seeds that horse racing is 21st century legalised cruelty.
“The Wellington Cup is a celebration of animal abuse. The public are attending the races because they are not connecting the dots. Horse racing is blatant, inherent animal cruelty that happens right before their eyes, but is cleverly disguised by fashion, music, and money,” Melody Willis said.