For a one year period from 1 August 2015 to 31 July 2016, CPR collected data from the stewards reports from every state and territory in Australia, compiling a detailed report of the horses who have died in racing and the reasons why – something that is not made available to the public each year to the public by the industry itself.

Key Findings

  • 132 horses killed on track for a number of reasons most commonly for catastrophic front limb injury (63)
  • On average one horse will die on Australian racetracks every 2.8 days
  • Five horses collapsed and died
  • 11 horses died from cardiac causes
  • The state with the highest recorded deaths was NSW (58) followed by VIC (33)
  • The most dangerous age for a racehorse was 5 years old
  • 60 of the 132 horses that were killed had been raced as a 2 year old
  • The most lethal tracks in Australia were Rosehill Gardens (NSW), where 6 horses died and Alice Springs (NT), where 5 horses died
The total death toll for the one year period was 132 horses, equaling one dead horse every 2.8 days.


The 12 month period of data collection ends on the Horse’s Birthday (August 1) and is released on the first day of Spring (September 1).

Here’s why:

What is the horse’s birthday?

no-retirement-plan-for-horsesThe Horse’s Birthday is traditionally a day of celebration in Australian Racing; however with so many welfare issues and racehorse deaths each year, CPR believes it should be used as a day of reflection and consideration about how racing in Australia can be made safer for its equine athletes who are not given a choice to compete.

The first day of September marks the first day of Spring, and therefore the racing industry’s busiest period, Spring Racing Carnival. It’s important to step back at this time and consider what is happening to racehorses year-round, when racing is not as largely celebrated.


We believe that the racing of underdeveloped horses in two year old racing (which often predisposes them to further injury if they do not break down at that age), the relentless beatings of over-tired horses with the whip and the placement of hurdles in front of horses in a group, at a fast pace in jumps racing are all welfare issues which contribute to a high number of deaths and injuries in racing.

This deathwatch serves as a reminder for why the Australian Racing Industry must introduce welfare reform in order to survive as an ethical, sustainable industry in Australia.

The total death toll for the one year period was 132 horses, equaling one dead horse every 2.8 days.


In Memoriam – 115 Fallen racehorses 1st August 2015 – 31st July 2016

Adynata Unnamed Atomic Blaze
Ventriloquist Nip of Time Dame Judarius
Diamond Daze The Deestructor Got To Be Dancing
Grey Rena Little Fighter Lily My Girl
Unnamed Courser On The Other Hand
Stevie Boy Three Rondavels Grande Filou
Burbero Grappa Brandy Unnamed Gelding
Sanasana Sooner Or Later Deceptive
Reformatsky Our Voodoo Prince Street Serenade
Alexstrsza Settler’s Joy Shalimar Choice
Stimac Lord Esprit Oncebittentwiceshy
We Leica Red Freedom Son Noisy Nick
Bianca Star Bish ‘N’ Borg Sharknado
Unnamed Trading Star Shimoda
Jokes Aseide Pollyata Neuroblast
Holy Lord Unnamed Ussandu
Seafight Man Of Stealth Fieldmaster
Danewin Winning Asadauskatie Nona Saal’s Girl
Dakabee Dom Henrique Cliffs Dream
Miss Rapidash Castlemagne King Tuscan Fire
Mr Wrecker Cartel Queen Grand Proposal
Madam Maher Catseye Magic Red Corner
Rabbuka Motivado Visual Motif
Penny Class Happy Jack Ferris
Beau Brock Mondo Miss Harissa
Miss Ella Hawk Fortune Fish Skip Course
Capricious Spirit Vanrippa Bazza’s Boy
Babazaar Sir Hagrid Conferring
Great Heart Quick Strike Chichester
To Cry For Bass Coast United Strategy
I’m Making A Clang Black Viper Yancha Boy
Canaden Miss Royale Fascade
Special Millie Unnamed Running Bull
Merry Yeoman Pure Karma Bless This Day
Star Viking Lady Dundee Tainted Love
Dark Jasper Eireini Sweet Silhouette
Palzago Can Be Bossy Steep
Kasiano Lad Redominanced Captain Angry
Jayelem Charging Raine Ultimate Pleasure
Red Cadeaux Gatalistic Passage Rock
Modrich Excelebration-Saucy Nell Too Much Choice
Miss Written Hurricane Andy Game Breaker
Sequelene Theracian Code Noir
Freeport Usurper Tales of Grimm