BHA looking into Sir Mark Todd horse whipping video

Source: 1News

The British Horseracing Authority is investigating after a video emerged on social media of New Zealand Olympic equestrian Sir Mark Todd whipping a horse with a branch.

The video, posted to TikTok, showed the two-time Olympic gold medallist striking a horse with a stick for not crossing a water obstacle.

The video is understood to be two years old and only recently resurfaced on the platform.

“The footage seen this weekend of Sir Mark Todd hitting a horse with a branch has rightly caused anger and upset within the equestrian community and beyond,” the authority said in a statement on Monday.

“His behaviour, for which he has apologised, fell a long way short of the standards of care we expect of licensed individuals and that we know is provided to the overwhelming majority of horses in training in Britain every day. The BHA is looking into the incident.”

Sir Mark apologised for his actions in a statement to UK newspaper The Express.

"I wholeheartedly apologise to the horse and all involved for my actions in this video clip.

"One of the main things I preach is about establishing a mutual respect between horse and rider and that patience and kindness is the best way to get results.

"I believe this is one of the main attributes along with a great empathy with animals that has enabled me to have a long and successful career in eventing.

"I am very disappointed in myself that I did not adhere to that in this case."

The 65-year-old won five Olympic medals for New Zealand across seven Games spanning from 1984 to 2016. He retired from all competition in 2019.