Scandinavia is a small corner of the racing world – yet when it comes to the farcical whip debate once more dominating headlines in Britain, perhaps it is worth looking to the Nordic region to find a meaningful example.
Back in 1986, when I was publishing Scanform, a form book covering all races in Norway, Sweden and Denmark, a ban on the use of the whip was introduced in one of these jurisdictions (Norway).
It was a political decision, made by the Ministry of Agriculture – and it was irreversible. Like the majority of racing professionals, I was convinced the change would cause problems and be detrimental to the sport.
How wrong I was. The change actually helped save the sport in a country where it has been up against it on several snowy fronts for more than a century.
Read the full article on Thoroughbred Racing Commentary