A PVC-clad dominatrix surprised race-going punters at Kempton Park by inviting them for a good whipping.

However, this was not a venue for an S & M club, but part of charity Animal Aid's call for a ban on the use of the whip on horses.

The dominatrix, who was in fact the charity's fundraiser Kate Fowler-Reeves, invited punters to offer their own rumps for a whipping to see how they liked it.

She said: "Surprisingly, most people decided against volunteering for a whipping. But one man, however, did offer me his rump and even wanted it harder.

"Animal Aid is completely against whipping in horse racing, which is the only sport which uses it. We are convinced that the use of the whip is regularly abused despite strict regulations."

Animal Aid's director, Andrew Tyler, said the charity's recent report, A Hiding to Nothing, showed not only that whipping was cruel, but that horses who were whipped performed less well.

He added: "Using pain in an effort to control an animal is morally repugnant to anyone with respect for animals."

The website of the Horse Racing Regulatory Authority (HRA) states the use of the whip is allowed if it is used discerningly.

It states: "The HRA will not tolerate abuse of the horse and considers its welfare and the safety of the rider to be paramount. The whip should be used for safety, correction and encouragement only."

The website also says horses should not be whipped with excessive force or frequency and that breeches of the HRA code of conduct could lead to disciplinary action.

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