From Racenet article:
Competing jurisdictions in Australian racing have not been able to have a consensus on much in recent years but Racing Victoria CEO Giles Thompson says one is needed on the outlawing of whips for anything other than safety purposes.
Thompson has previously expressed his opinion that a whip ban is inevitable and he re-iterated that stance on Wednesday.
He believes Australia will have a whip ban forced on it if the states don't come to an agreement to ban whip use for anything other than jockeys using the whips for safety purposes.
A national consensus would be needed to enforce rule change and the sticking point could be that NSW holds veto powers.
The issue has been discussed at a national level but does not have the full support of the state racing bodies.
"The debate is around encouragement and I’ve been on record several times saying that my view is that a ban for encouragement is inevitable," Thompson said on RSN.
"I don’t see a world where even the racing community, let alone the broader community, allows the continuance of whips for encouragement and I think those discussions and debates continue to happen around the country.
"It is no doubt a national issue, it’s a national rule.
"I don’t think it would be good for a state to go alone in that, even if it could.
"I think Australia can take the opportunity to get ahead of the curve on this, deal with the issue, grab that nettle and deal with it.
"If we don’t, it will be forced upon us, either by the fact that other jurisdictions are dealing with it or because the Governments, in one particular state or another, actually enforce it upon us."
The Daily Telegraph newspaper in Sydney reported earlier this week that champion jockeys Hugh Bowman and Kerrin McEvoy were both urging the racing industry to resist any push to ban the whip.
“I don’t think that (banning whips) is necessary,’’ Bowman told the Daily Telegraph.
“Whips don’t hurt the horses and that is what we (racing industry) need to publicise.’’
Thompson said he understood that it was an emotive issue but the broad image of racing was at stake.
"I saw some coverage in the Sydney press over the weekend about some top jockeys talking about how the padded whip doesn’t hurt the horse," Thompson said.
'I agree with that, it doesn’t hurt the horse, but that’s not the point.
"The point is that from an image perspective for racing, for racing to be broadly accepted by current and future generations, the use of the whip is inconsistent with that.
"It’s one of those things we’ve all probably known in our heart of hearts that it’s eventually coming.
"I think the last twenty years of reductions on whip use is a trend that is coming at us, but it’s a difficult issue. It’s an issue that will create great debate and emotion."