||AIM: To establish the prevalence and factors influencing the prevalence and severity of gastric ulceration in racehorses in New Zealand. METHODS: Horses (n=171) in active training for racing by trainers (n=24) located throughout New Zealand were examined using gastroscopy during 2003 and 2004. Images of the examination were recorded and reviewed, and an ordinal grade based on the severity of gastric ulceration present was assigned, using the grading system proposed by the Equine Gastric Ulcer Council (EGUC). Information about the horses such as age, breed, sex, stabling, time at pasture, pasture quality, and presence of clinical signs consistent with equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS) was recorded. RESULTS: Of the 171 horses in the study, 133 (78%) were Thoroughbreds and 38 (22%) were Standardbreds. Evidence of gastric ulceration was present in 151 (88.3%) of these. Prevalence of ulceration was higher at the lesser curvature (LC) and greater curvature (GC) of the stomach than at the saccus caecus (SC; p<0.01), and ulceration was more severe at the LC than at either the GC (p=0.02) or the SC (p<0.001). The prevalence of ulceration did not differ between the two breeds (p=0.51) or between horses of differing ages (p=0.56). Gastric ulceration was evident in 125/141 (89%) horses kept at pasture for at least 4 h/day, in all 13 (100%) horses kept at pasture full time, and in 16/17 (94%) horses stabled full time. Prevalence and severity of ulceration did not differ between horses stabled full time, kept at pasture for part of the day or kept at pasture full time (p=0.33 and 0.13, respectively), and for horses grazed on pasture severity of ulceration did not vary significantly with the quality of the pasture (p=0.12). Neither prevalence (p=0.26) nor severity (p=0.49) of gastric ulceration varied significantly with duration of training. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of gastric ulceration in racehorses in New Zealand is similar to that reported elsewhere for horses in active training for racing. Access to pasture for some or all of the day did not appear to be protective.