Liverpool jockey, Joe Anderson has recalled the ‘horrendous’ feeling of losing a horse after two died at this year’s Grand National Festival.

Horses Giovinco and Pikar died on Ladies Day.

He said: “The only way to describe it is the worst, like when it happens it’s the worst thing.

“It happened to me not that long ago.

“It’s horrendous honestly and what I don’t think the general public know what goes on behind the scenes, don’t know how well the horses are cared for and looked after the horses actually are.

“Like they get treated better than most people.

“I swear to God they have everything done for them.

Joe Anderson in action racing for the line

“They have the best veterinary care, the best feed, they’re fit as a flea and it’s what they’re bred to do.

“You take five of them out and let them loose in a field and they’ll race each other in a field all day. 

“How many times do you see when you watch your races and you see horses over enthusiastic, that can be detrimental to their performance but it just shows their enthusiasm. 

“They love it.

“And to be honest, the only way you can describe it is they’re half a tonne of animal if they don’t want to do it they’re not going to do it.”

Responding to anti-horse racers

The deaths of Giovinco and Pikar sparked charity Animal Aid to call for an end to the racing industry.

Animal Aid is a charity formed in 1977 with the aim to end animal cruelty.

Joe responded to those claims and said he believes those wanting to ban the sport are ignorant.

He said: “But as the anti’s I think it’s just a complete lack of understanding.

“I think it’s pure ignorance, I think the numbers speak for themselves.

“How the figures have dropped, the measures have been improved and I think welfare is paramount.

“Obviously accidents can happen and do happen but limiting them to as fewer numbers as possible is the most important thing.”

“I had no intention of becoming a jockey”

Joe, from Huyton had no intention of becoming a jockey after leaving sixth form.

His parents were hesitant yet optimistic and promised to support him if he put ‘100%’ into it.

He applied for the British Racing School on a whim and ‘away he went’.

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Plumpton, Transmission and ‘that’ moment

Joe hit the headlines in January when he rode a horse called Transmission at Plumpton Racecourse, East Sussex.

The jockey fancied Transmission to win and the race took a turn when he was flung from the horse.

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Transmission and Joe went on to win the race and produce one of the biggest comebacks in racing this year. 

“But it wasn’t a fluke because he went back there last week and won again. He’s a good horse.”

Finding a National horse is like finding a Willy Wonka ticket

Joe planned to ride the Transmission at the Grand National meeting but decided against it due to the hot weather.

Transmission went on to win again at Plumpton on the day of the Grand National.

The jockey recognised the monumental task of finding a horse capable of competing in the race.

But that hasn’t stopped him dreaming of racing in the sport’s biggest race.

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