A few horse experts have put forth that even the fastest of domestic horses has a top speed of about 10 km/h (“a bit slower than a good racing car, but it is not very fast”). But with the development of faster, more powerful engines, it is now widely agreed that “super-quick” horses are indeed possible (and a few racing enthusiasts do seem to believe that the top speeds of horses have been set as a challenge to be met).
Some horse owners, including most on this site, have been intrigued by the potential of the new technology, but they have resisted any desire to attempt it for their breeding horses. They are reluctant to use racing “improvements” as reasons for their reluctance to purchase a thoroughbred.
The reason they have not tried it themselves is that they have already had their horses tested by thoroughbreds. The results are often disappointing, as this site has learned from our work with thoroughbreds that there is more to this issue than meets the eye.
What about the speed at which a horse jumps on the tracks?
The most important consideration in the handling of any stablebred horse is whether their jumping speed, including the speed at which they are able to run, falls within the “normal” range for their type.
A horse whose jumping speed falls below one half the rate limit specified in an approved book or standard will not be able to compete with other stablebreds of the same breed for a race for more than a short distance. In addition, if the racing club permits this level of jumping for their stable, the horse must be assessed individually as well as with the other stablebreds in their breed.
At every race the jumping speed needs to be reassessed with other horse breeders of the same type and size. In most clubs, the jumping rate is reported to the governing committee at the conclusion of the race. There are only a few clubs of “normal” speed racing that allow a jumping rate for themselves and their stable. If these clubs are forced to adopt the more demanding standard for all horses in their race teams, they will find that they cannot compete at their greatest speed.
Even if a horse has a higher jumping speed than the required limit (in the case of a jumping horse this could be up to 50%, at most) the horse will not be able to race unless the jumping speed is within the normal range (in the case of a half racing horse this would be about 3 miles per hour).
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