Equine Flu: Musselburgh cancellation a 'real, real shame' - clerk of course

  • Equine Flu: Musselburgh cancellation a 'real, real shame' - clerk of course

Equine Flu: Musselburgh cancellation a 'real, real shame' - clerk of course

Four British meetings were scheduled for Thursday - Huntingdon, Doncaster, Ffos Las, Chelmsford.

Donald McCain's yard was the only one represented at both tracks.

Racing is still set to continue in Ireland, where Thursday's meeting at Thurles took place, but no entries from British stables will be accepted until further notice.

Racing woke up to the news that all four scheduled race meetings in Britain on Thursday have been cancelled following confirmation of three cases of equine flu in vaccinated horses in a racing yard which sent runners to the meetings at Ayr and Ludlow on Thursday.

Equine influenza, or equine flu, is a strain of flu that effects horses.

In a statement, the BHA said: "This precautionary approach is meant to ensure we put the health of the horse population and control of the virus first, and avoid any unnecessary risk that might come from returning to racing too quickly".

It is one of four meetings across the United Kingdom scheduled today that have been cancelled by the British Horseracing Authority.

"The BHA has worked quickly to identify which yards could potentially have been exposed today and to identify the further actions required". The BHA is communicating with yards potentially exposed to ensure appropriate quarantine and biosecurity measures are put in place and horse movements restricted.

Symptoms of EI include, high fever, coughing and nasal discharge.

It can be airborne over reasonable distances as well as be transmitted indirectly, including via people.

Equine flu isn't known to effect humans, however outbreaks in the past could be quite devastating, owing to the fact that we relied on horses quite heavily in the military, transportation, and the postal service.

The BHA conceded "the full extent of potential exposure is unknown" but is working as fast as possible to gather information about any potential spread of the outbreak.

In a statement, the BHA said: "This approach will allow samples to be collected and assessed by the Animal Health Trust in order that a fully informed decision can be made on Monday".