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Whips certain to go, says racing chief

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Kings Will Dream (right) takes out the Turnbull Stakes from Finche (left).Source:AAP

A ban on jockeys using the whip in racing is “inevitable”, according to Racing Victoria chief executive Giles Thompson.

Thompson said the debate would continue “until whips are banned”, conceding that he could not see them still being used in 10 years’ time.

“I don’t see the whip being sustainable in the long term,” Thompson told RSN.

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“The question is how we make that inevitable transition and when we make that inevitable transition.”

Six-time Melbourne Cup-winning owner Lloyd Williams brought the whip debate to the fore last week, calling for an immediate ban to meet community standards around animal welfare.

Williams told the Herald Sun that “there is no place in the modern world for whips”.

Jockey Daniel Moor voiced his disapproval of the push on social media on Wednesday.

“Better ban jockeys then too. Won’t be able to fill a field of jockeys that will be happy to not at least carry a persuader,” Moor wrote on Twitter.

Whip hand: Kings Will Dream (right) takes out the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes from Finche (left) at Flemington.

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Whip hand: Kings Will Dream (right) takes out the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes from Finche (left) at Flemington.Source:AAP

Thompson said it would be difficult to make such a huge change in racing.

“Lloyd’s position is right, there is a need to look at it,” he said.

“But change in racing is quite difficult as there is such a broad group of stakeholders and so many different angles.

“Sometimes it takes a bold decision and sometimes it takes consultation and negotiation.”

Campaigning for the immediate removal of whips from racing, Williams told the Herald Sun last week the sport had to meet higher community standards when it came to animal welfare.

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“Australia needs to be at forefront and withdraw the whip,” Williams said.

“If we are not proactive, the industry will be lucky to survive.

“The world has changed. I have seen some research. The whip has to go.”

Australia’s current whip rules allow jockeys to use the whip five times before the 100m mark, with unlimited usage for the remainder of the race.

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