Philip Freedman appointed Chair of Retraining of Racehorses (RoR)

29 Sep 2020 BHA Features Welfare

Joint Press Release
The British Horseracing Authority and Retraining of Racehorses (RoR) have today confirmed that Philip Freedman will succeed Paul Roy as the new Chair of the charity.

Philip Freedman is a lifelong owner and breeder and has held senior positions within racing administration for over twenty years, most recently on the sport’s tripartite Member’s Committee as the Chair of the Horsemen’s Group. His term will begin on 1 January 2021.

Paul Roy has been Chair of RoR since July 2013, during which time the charity’s activities have increased substantially. Pre-Covid, in 2019, British racing’s official charity for the welfare of retired racehorse offered over 500 educational events for the owners of former racehorses, staged in excess of 300 competitions or classes across 15 equine disciplines catering for all levels of ability from grassroots to elite and provided a safety net and care for any thoroughbreds in need of charitable support.

The appointment of a new Chair comes in the wake of the strategy published by the racing industry’s Horse Welfare Board (HWB) in February 2020. The HWB strategy identified the need for British Racing to have greater awareness of the risks associated with aftercare and increase resources and focus in this area.

Philip Freedman said:

“I am delighted to be taking over as Chair of Retraining of Racehorses. As someone who has spent much of their life working with horses and within the racing and breeding industries, I recognise the importance of ensuring that the horses we breed and train for racing are also provided with a fulfilling second career.

“Under Paul’s stewardship RoR has made considerable progress and become a highly respected organisation throughout the wider equestrian world and with fellow equine welfare charities. I am looking forward to building on that progress and working with the Horse Welfare Board to help them deliver the industry’s welfare strategy.”

Paul Roy said:

“It has been a great honour to Chair RoR for the past seven years, and I’m proud of the progress that has been made to improve the welfare and aftercare of thoroughbreds.

“I wish Philip, the trustees and the team the best of luck as they look to ensure that through the work of RoR British racing remains a world leader in the aftercare of retired racehorses.”

Notes to editors:

1.  The new Chair of RoR was appointed by the BHA via the two seats they have on the RoR Board. The approval for the appointment was ratified by the BHA Board at its most recent meeting and the Nominations Committee for the appointment process comprised BHA Board Members Laura Whyte, Andrew Merriam and Nick Rust.

2. Retraining of Racehorses is British Horseracing’s official charity for the welfare of racehorses that have retired from racing. Founded in 2000, RoR’s vision is that there is a clearly marked pathway for all British trained racehorses to enjoy a fulfilling life further to their racing career, and where applicable breeding career, with a strong and secure welfare safety net in place.

The charity’s roles and responsibilities include, to:

  • Facilitate the transition to a second career for horses leaving racing;
  • Educate owners and riders who take responsibility for former racehorses;
  • Create opportunities for former racehorses to participate and compete in a range of equine disciplines and therapeutic activities; and
  • Protect the welfare of former racehorses, in particular those who are ‘vulnerable’ or otherwise in need of care.

Recognising its collective responsibility for the welfare of horses that have raced or been in training, the British racing industry provides the core funding for RoR’s activities. The funds are delivered through contributions from across the industry, either automatically via the Rules of Racing, as overseen by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), or by annual agreement.

3. Philip Freedman,  Chairman of the Horsemen’s Group since January 2013, is also a former Chairman of the Thoroughbred Breeders Association and BHA Tax Committee. He has been a Director of the British Horseracing Board, the Horserace Betting Levy Board and Jockey Club Estates, Chairman of the Trustees of the British European Breeders Fund and a local steward at Sandown and Kempton Park. Philip is a member of the Jockey Club and is Managing Director of Cliveden Stud Ltd, which has seven broodmares boarding at Watership Down and Lofts Hall Studs, and most recently has had Horseplay, winner of the Lancashire Oaks, in training. He is a Trustee of the Andrtew Lloyd Webber Charitable Foundation and is also a bloodstock consultant to James Cowper LLC, the Newbury based accountants which has a long history of equine involvement.

4. Philip Freedman: