I rode as a professional jockey and have worked on race day barriers for seven years and have been Gold Coast Assistant Starter for 18 months.
During this period I have witnessed a lot of loading problems, resulting in injuries to horse, rider and barrier attendants.
Racehorses are powerful animals and if they kick out it can result in serious injuries and death to a handler. Therefore, health and safety is paramount to us, and we have been trialing the Speedy Safety Loader with great success and found it to be an excellent safety device for loading horses.
We usually lock hands; however, with the SSL handles and adjustable strap, it makes it easier and safer to load horses because it allows us to be more forward and not directly behind the horse's hind legs.
Further, it is also a great training aid for trainers educating their horses to load into the barriers and on horse floats.
I have been involved in the horse industry for twenty years as a jockey and now as an equestrian rider. Further, I travel to several race meetings every week as a mounting yard commentator.
Loading horses on horse floats and especially into barrier stalls has been a significant problem for years, resulting in severe injuries and deaths to riders and horses.
Nearly every race meeting a horse is scratched at the barrier for refusing to go into the barrier stalls. These delays can cause other horses in barriers becoming fractious, resulting in riders and horses being injured, and the horse being scratch from the race.
I viewed the unique Speedy Safety Loader in action, and the safety benefits for horse and rider is exceptional. It removed the problems handlers have trying to lift a 500kg horse forward with closed hands and closed to the horse's hind legs.
Based on my experience this is an excellent safety innovation to reduce injuries and deaths to horses and riders.