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By Jennifer Faull, Deputy Editor

April 7, 2013 | 1 min read

Campaigners for animal rights have gathered outside Channel 4’s London headquarters accusing the broadcaster of deliberately ramping up the danger of the Grand National steeplechase race through its recent advert.

Called "cynical, callous and pretty disgusting" by Andrew Tyler of Animal Aid, the advert showed horses jumping over cars and park benches as well as jockeys falling from their horses. It ended with the tagline "the original extreme sport".

As a result, around 80 campaigners came together on the day of the Grand National, 6 April, to chant "shame on Channel 4", naming the 23 horses that have died during the event since 1989.

Tyler went on to tell the Guardian: "Channel 4 are doing what they do best, which is to court controversy in a way that is also designed to generate outrage. The Grand National is extremely hazardous, deliberately so and they are playing up to that fact."

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