Shocking vision has emerged of a barrier attendant appearing to punch a horse before a race in Launceston on Wednesday night.
In a video uploaded to Twitter, the attendant can be seen wrestling with the horse before appearing to strike it in the head with his right hand.
The horse involved in the incident is reportedly Century Arrow, a four-year-old gelding trained by Angela Brakey.
Century Arrow went on to finish second in the race behind Clean Acheeva.
According to Tasracing CEO Vaughn Lynch, the barrier attendant in question has been stood down pending a steward's inquiry.
SAVAGE BACKLASH: Horse-punch jockey 'received death threats'
"A stewards' inquiry was held at the end of last night's meeting and adjourned until this afternoon," Lynch said.
"Animal welfare is a strong focus for Tasracing, and we do not condone what appears to have occurred in the incident in question in any way.
"Tasracing provides ongoing training to its staff... training requirements are regularly reviewed and will be considered further following the conclusion of the stewards' investigation."
The incident comes at a bad time for the racing industry, after an eerily similar situation in a race meet at Port Lincoln last week.
On that occasion, South Australian apprentice jockey Dylan Caboche was filmed punching his mount She's Reneldasgirl.
Punters have since slammed the lenient two-week suspension handed down to Caboche.
Chief Steward Johan Petzer said Thoroughbred Racing South Australia would not condone or allow such behaviour and took the welfare of horses seriously.
"While we understand there will be a lot of debate over the penalty we can assure the general public the stewards' panel took into account all the factors before determining an appropriate penalty," he said.
However he defended the length of suspension.
"There was an early guilty plea, he showed remorse and he has a clean record in this regard," Petzer said.