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Horse Racing

‘Extremely Inappropriate’ Horse Trainer Receives Five-Year Ban for ‘Pulling Steward’s Pants Down’

Disgraceful Behavior Leads to Lengthy Ban

An Australian horse trainer, Todd Balfour, has been handed a five-year ban after pleading guilty to engaging in improper conduct by pulling a steward's pants down at Kangaroo Island racecourse.

Incident Details at Kangaroo Island Racecourse

The inappropriate incident took place on February 16, where Balfour approached a racing official conducting breathalyser tests and pulled the steward's pants down without consent, fully exposing him to onlookers.

Reduced Ban with Guilty Plea

Initially facing a ten-year ban, Balfour's punishment was reduced to five years due to his guilty plea, previous involvement in the industry, and expression of remorse for his actions.

Stewards' Perspective

The stewards acknowledged Balfour's remorse but emphasized the seriousness of his actions, causing distress to the official and deeming his behavior as "reprehensible and extremely inappropriate." The ban is set to expire in 2029, with Balfour likely to appeal.

Responsible Gambling Reminder

Always remember to gamble responsibly in the world of horse racing and sports betting.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the initial step to training a racing horse?

The initial phase of training a racehorse involves a critical stage known as “breaking,” where the horse becomes accustomed to carrying a saddle, bridle, and the weight of a rider. During these sessions, patience is key to ensuring the horse feels comfortable around humans and with the equipment they will use throughout their racing career.

Can you ride a racehorse in any place?

Although initial training can be done on any track, race-specific training is often required in facilities that mimic the conditions the horse may face during competition. This includes regulation-sized tracks with the same type of surface the horse will race on. It is important to use the right track in order to condition the horse correctly and familiarize them with the particular racing environment.

How critical is the horse’s pedigree in racing success?

Pedigree is a good indicator of potential but it’s not the only factor that determines a horse’s performance. The lineage of a horse may indicate an inherited ability for speed or endurance. However, training, health and temperament can also be influential factors. Good training can maximize a horse’s natural abilities and even allow it to outperform others with more impressive pedigrees.

How often are racehorses trained?

Racehorses’ training frequency is determined by the horse, his level of fitness and racing schedule. They would usually have a daily regimen consisting of walking, trotting and cantering with more intense work like galloping and breezing a few times a week in order to build speed and stamina. Rest days are equally important to allow the horse to recover and prevent overtraining.

When can a horse be expected to start racing training?

Horses that are two years old can begin training, although they may start with basic training. Their bodies are still young, and can adapt to the learning process. The exact timing depends on the horse’s maturity and temperament.

Is it essential for a horse to wear a particular type of shoe when racing?

Racehorses wear special shoes called racing plates, which are lighter and thinner than regular horseshoes. These plates minimize weight while providing the necessary traction for the racetrack. A professional farrier with experience in working on racehorses carefully selects and fits these shoes according to the hoof structure of each horse and the type of racing surface that they will run on.


  • Studies suggest that proper early training can reduce the risk of musculoskeletal injuries in racehorses by up to 50%.
  • The average cost to train a thoroughbred racehorse for one year can exceed $50,000, accounting for expenses related to training, boarding, and veterinary care.
  • Statistically, less than 1% of thoroughbred foals born each year will go on to win a stakes race.
  • Around 80% of thoroughbred racehorses begin their racing careers by the age of two, according to industry estimates.
  • Research has found that a racehorse’s stride length can increase by up to 7% following specific strength and conditioning programs.
  • Racehorse mortality rates during racing have been observed to be between 1.5 to 2 deaths per thousand starts, depending on the racing jurisdiction.

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How To

How To Choose The Right Diet For A Racehorse

To select the best diet for racehorses, you must ensure a balanced mix of grains, forage, and nutritional supplements. As the main source of nutrition, feed high-quality pasture or hay to keep the gut healthy. Include grains such as oats in your diet to provide the energy you need for exercise. Adding electrolytes, vitamins and other nutrients through supplements can support your recovery and health. Consult an equine specialist to determine the horse’s specific metabolic and work requirements.