by John Burke

July 20, 2021

Good morning all,

In today’s main piece. I have two eyecatchers from Saturday’s action. Plus, a selection from Chelmsford. However, I must begin on a sour note and the revelations made last night by the BBC’s Panorama programme.

“Freedom of information requests revealed that 4,000 former racehorses were slaughtered in Britain and Ireland since the beginning of 2019. Most, but not all, were trained in Ireland.”

As I feared last night's BBC Panorama investigation was a major publicity blow for the sport. Last week I wrote about racing’s hidden secret of horse wastage. Something that the sport has successfully managed to hide way from the wider public.  Well a light was firmly shone on it last night.  

The issues raised in the investigation go to the very heart of the sport and its “social licence” with the wider public. The high horse ‘wastage’ rate whether, due to a lack of ability or injury and insurance payouts to owners ensure that too many colts and geldings are on the fast track to the slaughter house.

Grim viewing

It was stomach churning viewing seeing the likes of Vyta Du Roc and his trusting companions being led to their slaughter. Even worse for the sport the guy from Animal Aid came across as calm and reasonable rather than the political activist he is.

Horse racing is a multi-billion industry that can surely afford to look after these vulnerable animals, rather than rely on the good efforts of a few small charities.

I don’t think fallout for the sport from this programme will be felt instantly. However, its all part of drip, drip effect that will eventually weather away at its edifice.

Will it have an affect on the casual racegoers?  

Will it have an affect on potential newbies to the sport.

The answer to both questions is a very firm, yes.

There is a bright light amidst the gloom. The investigation will hopefully lead to the HRI and BHA taking serious action against those trainers failing these magnificent creatures. It’s now time for the racing authorities, both sides of the Irish Sea, to get on the front foot and deal with the rotten apples. If they don’t the sports long term future will be in peril and rightly so.

Two For the Tracker

Just the two eyecatchers this week. One from the Curragh and the other from Newbury.

Grammata – Denis Hogan

A winner at Tipperary last September. The 3-year-old will have gone into a few trackers after her 2 ¼ length 3rd of 19 in the valuable Scurry Handicap. Her effort can be upgraded as she didn’t get the clearest of passages when just starting to get rolling. This was her first start beyond 5f but she finished her race off strongly and can win a sprint handicap over 6f.

Dark Swansong – Clive Cox

The nicely bred son of Dark Angel made a highly promising racecourse debut in the 6f novice that opened Newbury’s Saturday card. Finishing a 5 ¼ length 4th of 17 the colt shaped the best of those making their racecourse debuts. His inexperience showed when he was asked for his effort but he ran on nicely enough under a tender ride. This experience shouldn’t be lost on the colt and he can win races.

Tuesday Racing

I’m off down to Chelmsford for today’s selection.


7:35 – Luna Wish enhanced her excellent course record 4 wins from 10 starts 7 places when a ¼ length 2nd of 8 over C&D 61-days ago. Last time out was a career best effort by the filly and if she’s ready to roll after her break can get into the money.

Luna Wish – 15/2 @ Coral & Ladbrokes (EW)

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Good luck with your Tuesday’s bets.


John Burke is the tipster behind the long standing Victor Value service you can join him here –

Disclaimer: All views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of TGH Trading Ltd or it's employees.

About the author 

John Burke

John Burke is a long term tipster at the Victor Value service, a contributor to On Course Profits and of course a regular contributor here at the Daily Punt. If you want all of John's selections every weekend and his horses to follow – Click Here

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  1. Eventually
    the Whole aspect of Gambling has to be looked at
    People like Emily Coates of 365
    being able to pay herself and Brother 700 million a Year .
    Tumbled from Lap of Poorer people .
    Sad to Say it but after over 50 years in Racing and Gambling
    it all needs looking into

    The Drugs Both Horses and Jockeys
    The Rampant fiddles by Both Trainers and Jockeys .
    Will eventually be under public Spotlght and BHA can hang head in Shame .
    On take the lot of Them
    Whether that is Free Dinners or Brown Envelopes . I will Keep on Posting on every available website and writing until the whole house of Cards comes tumbling down .
    and people that are involved in Racing ought to now heads in Shame
    It's rotten to the Core. .
    As you saw last Night of people wholly shallying and refusing to comment .

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