SIR – There was intense media coverage when two horses died at this year’s Grand National and I don’t know how many of the other horses injured may have subsequently been destroyed.

However, death and injury are not confined to the Grand National.

Worcester racecourse saw the deaths of seven horses in 2010 alone, according to national campaign group Animal Aid’s investigations.

Most people see horse racing as a harmless sport in which the animals participate willingly and enjoy the thrill.

It has a glamorous image but its motivation is financial gain and prestige.

About 18,000 foals are born into the closely-related British and Irish racing industries each year, of which about 40 per cent go on to race. Those which do not make the grade go for meat or repeatedly change hands in a downward spiral of neglect. Of those which do race, about 420 are raced to death every year.

The industry gives a pittance for retired animals, numbering about 7,500 a year, so the same fate awaits most of them.

The racing industry is only kept alive through betting income and course attendance fees.

Please don’t back the cruelty – for you it’s only a harmless flutter, but horses can pay with their lives.