Default percentage for the 51st Levy Scheme
The Board noted that the default percentage of total gross profit attributable to British horserace betting business, excluding profits from gaming machines, to be identified in the Form of Declaration for the 51st Levy period will be 38%. This has declined from 41% in the 50th period (2011/12).
Capital Credit Requests
The Board approved a Capital Credit grant of £200,000 to York Racecourse towards refurbishment of the Old County Stand
Appointments to the Veterinary Advisory Committee (VAC)
The Board approved the appointments of two new members of the VAC following recommendations of the panel:
(a) For a VAC member to provide expertise on veterinary virology, immunology, molecular biology, microbiology, diagnostics and vaccines, the appointment of Professor Falko Steinbach, based at the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency in Surrey. Professor Steinbach is a vet with a scientific background in the key priority area of infectious disease.
(b) For a VAC member to provide expertise on orthopaedics, musculoskeletal and bone biology, exercise physiology, endocrinology and genetics, the appointment of Professor Colin Farquharson, based at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh. Professor Farquharson has substantial knowledge of musculoskeletal research.
Professors Steinbach and Farquharson took up their roles on 1st March 2013.
The Board also extended the terms of office for Professor Willie Donachie, including in his role of Chairman, by one year to 31st December 2014 and of Professor Celia Marr by one year to 31st December 2014, appointed as Deputy Chairperson.
Strategic veterinary research priorities
The Board noted that the Thoroughbred Research Consultation Group (TRCG) recommended the following strategic research priorities for 2013-15:
• Improved prevention of current and emerging infectious diseases by the development of more effective vaccines, diagnostic tools, biosecurity and management strategies;
• Improved training environment and racecourse design and surfaces, riding strategies, tack and equipment to enhance the safety, health and well-being of racehorses;
• Improved methods of identification, management and prevention of musculoskeletal disease and injury in racehorses;
• Improved male and female reproductive efficiency.
The VAC endorsed these strategic research priorities at its meeting on 21st March.