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Michelle Payne fires back at critics who claim horse racing is cruel and should be banned 

Australian jockey Michelle Payne fires back at critics who claim horse racing is cruel and should be banned


Michelle Payne has slammed animal rights activists and critics who want to ban horse racing. 

The 36-year-old jockey explained that there is a wide misconception held by many when it comes to the treatment of horses in the racing industry.

‘If they saw these horse everyday, they’d see how well cared for and happy they are,’ The 2015 Melbourne Cup winner told Stellar.

Defending the industry: Australian jockey Michelle Payne has fired back at critics who claim horse racing is cruel and should be banned

‘They are treated like kings. I look after my horse better than I look after myself,’ Payne continued. ‘ 

She emphasised how ‘disappointing’ it is for her to constantly hear people claim the horses are abused or treated cruelly.

‘I know that’s their perception but if they really knew what was going on behind the scenes they wouldn’t think that,’ the champion jockey added. 

'They are treated like kings': The champion jockey explained that there is a wide misconception about the treatment of horses and stressed that she even looks after her own horses 'better than I look after myself'

‘They are treated like kings’: The champion jockey explained that there is a wide misconception about the treatment of horses and stressed that she even looks after her own horses ‘better than I look after myself’

Earlier this year, Michelle suffered horrific injuries during an incident with a horse in Ballarat, Victoria.

The horse reportedly kicked her in the face causing a deep cut on her chin and bruising on her legs.

Payne recalled the incident to the Herald Sun and revealed that the horse ‘got a fright and panicked and kicked me in the chin and leg’.

Injuries: The Melbourne Cup winner shared confronting photos to Instagram of the injuries she sustained, including a cut to her chin and bruising on her legs

Injuries: The Melbourne Cup winner shared confronting photos to Instagram of the injuries she sustained, including a cut to her chin and bruising on her legs

‘It wasn’t one of my own [horses]. It was a really, really quiet horse and it got a fright… I fell underneath him and when he got a fright he panicked and kicked me in the chin and kicked me in the leg,’ she said.

‘Initially I couldn’t get up because my leg was so sore and I thought I was being a sook. The blood was coming out of my chin but was still okay.’

Michelle was taken to hospital where she had stitches and underwent a head scan.

Michelle is a champion jockey and the first and only woman to win the Melbourne Cup horse race in its 160-year history. 

Making history: Michelle is the first and only woman to win the Melbourne Cup horse race in its 160-year history

Making history: Michelle is the first and only woman to win the Melbourne Cup horse race in its 160-year history

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