Monday 21st November 2011

HBLB Announces Research Grant Round for 2012

The Horserace Betting Levy Board (HBLB) will be calling for applications for equine veterinary research grants in 2012.

Following consultation with the thoroughbred racing and breeding industries, overseen by the Board’s Veterinary Advisory Committee (VAC), a comprehensive list of the scope of HBLB’s veterinary research interests is published on its website here.

Applications must be within the scope of these specific interests and in particular the following are research priorities:

 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.

Professor Willie Donachie, Chair of the VAC, said: “There is a vital role for scientific research in protecting the health and well-being of racing and breeding horses in the sport. The Board has approved an increased allocation to the overall veterinary budget in 2012 which will enable the reinstatement of research funding in 2012. Although the precise amount of funding for research is not yet confirmed, we are hopeful of investing a very substantial sum across a range of projects. This will enable us to continue to bring relevant and useful research outcomes to those who can put them into practice and make a real difference to the thoroughbred.”

Innovative and novel research approaches are encouraged and all applications will be subject to peer review and full evaluation by the VAC. Eligibility criteria apply and these are described here.

Applications will open in the New Year, with awards being made in autumn 2012. Further details for applicants, including the timetable, will be released in the coming weeks.