Olympic champion Mark Todd suspended for horse hitting video

Horse jumping with man on him, animal news
Mark Todd from New Zealand riding horse Leonidas II, file foto from 2016, credit: Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes

The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) suspended two-time Olympic equestrian champion Mark Todd for striking a horse with a branch in a video released a few days ago.

The 65-year-old New Zealander, who now trains horses in Wiltshire in Britain, was seen hitting a horse several times, forcing the animal towards a water jump in a cross-country schooling session.

“An interim suspension should be placed on the training licence of Sir Mark Todd following the emergence over the weekend of a video showing him striking a horse with what appears to be a branch,” the BHA said in a statement on Wednesday.

The interim suspension means Todd will be unable to race and train horses in Britain or internationally until investigations into animal cruelty are carried out.

Todd, who won gold medals at the Los Angeles and Seoul Olympics, apologised for his actions in the video.

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