The trainers of six wining horses in last week’s Melbourne Cup Carnival fit horses with a “health and fitness” tracker during training.
The equinITy Technology system allows users to “watch and listen to your horse's speed, heart rate and stride in real time, from anywhere in the world on any device”, according to the equinITy Technology web site.
The system uses a lightweight girth sleeve, which combines GPS technology with stride and heart rate monitoring capabilities. This allows measurement of recovery times, distance, split times, strides per furlong, stride length, speed, location and altitude, in addition to heart rate. Users login to a web interface to view the measurements
UK-based equinITy Technology claims that having “accurate and meaningful data to back up the trainer's observations and expertise gives you and your horse the edge”.
It is also pitching the technology as a way to monitor the welfare of horses.
Trainers who use the device include Danny O’Brien, who trained Melbourne Cup entrants Vow and Declare and The Oaks entrant Miami Bound.
“We’ve been using equinITy for over four years and it gives us additional information on the horses health and fitness that would otherwise be impossible to get. The quick analysis of ongoing data has enabled us to make some good calls in the past and gives us an edge against our competitors. It also puts the horse’s welfare at the forefront and that’s important” O’Brien said in an equinITy Technology press release.