The Jockey Club Releases Five-Year Statistics from Equine Injury Database

The Jockey Club today released the fatality statistics collected from the Equine Injury Database for the five-year period from 2009 to 2013.

The prevalence of race-related fatal injury for the time frame from Jan. 1, 2009, through Dec. 31, 2013, was 1.91 per 1,000 starts. The data was based on analysis of 1,871,522 starts. For 2013, the prevalence of fatal injury per 1,000 starts was 1.90. The attached document contains a five-year summary of statistics from the Equine Injury Database by surface, distance and age.

“The analysis shows that although the incidence of fatal injury on dirt and synthetic racing surfaces trended slightly upward in 2013, the incidence of fatal injury declined 20% over turf. Overall, synthetic racing surfaces continued to be associated with significantly fewer fatal injuries than dirt and turf,” said Dr. Tim Parkin, a veterinarian and epidemiologist from the University of Glasgow, who serves as a consultant on the Equine Injury Database and performed the analysis.

When comparing race distance, shorter races (<6 furlongs) saw a slightly higher injury rate versus middle and long races. This is consistent each year over the five-year span.

Similar to prior years, in 2013 the injury rate was higher in older horses, with 2-year-olds continuing a five-year trend of the lowest rate of catastrophic injuries.

The statistics include only injuries that resulted in fatalities within 72 hours from the date of the race.

A list of racetracks participating in the Equine Injury Database and detailed statistics from those tracks that voluntarily publish their results can be found at

The Jockey Club, founded in 1894 and dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing, is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds. In fulfillment of its mission, The Jockey Club, directly or through subsidiaries, provides support and leadership on a wide range of important industry initiatives, and it serves the information and technology needs of owners, breeders, media, fans and farms. It is the sole funding source for America’s Best Racing, the broad-based fan development initiative for Thoroughbred racing. You can follow America’s Best Racing at Additional information is available at

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