Ugliness in Florida, Part 1

Through a “Public Records” request to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, I was able to confirm the following kills at Florida racetracks in the 1st quarter, 2014. I have also included some various notes from the reports. They should speak for themselves.

2-year-old Side Street, January 4, Gulfstream 3

4-year-old Good Mother Fran, January 6, Gulfstream, training
“Location of deceased animal: Horse Pit”

4-year-old Golden Archway, January 11, Tampa Bay 3
“broke cannon bone, euthanized on track”
“Carcass Removed: 9:55 pm”

2-year-old Grab Your Partner, January 13, Tampa Bay, training

5-year-old Mr. Oz, January 15, Tampa Bay 2
“Carcass Removed: 4:40 am”

3-year-old Zesty Perry, January 16, Hialeah, training
“backed out of gate during training – flipped and hit head – seizures, severe”
“accidental death”

2-year-old Jmf La Panchista, January 17, Hialeah 5
“broken back during race”

2-year-old Lucky Cowgirl, January 18, Gulfstream, training

6-year-old More Nuggets, January 18, Hialeah 3
“compound fracture”
“Location of deceased animal: In maintenance area of track”

8-year-old Raised for Speed, January 20, Gulfstream 9
“Deceased Horse Location: Horse Pit”

download

9-year-old Suzzona, January 20, Gulfstream 10
“Deceased Horse Location: Horse Pit”

5-year-old Hey Dirty Face, January 21, Calder, training

2-year-old Our Mary Grace, January 26, Gulfstream, training
“Deceased Horse Location: Horse Pit”
picked up next day by Lowe’s Removal Service

3-year-old Corona Favorita, January 26, Hialeah 6
“fractured left femur, bled out, died”
“picked up by disposal company”

2-year-old Heavenly Champion, January 27, Gulfstream
probably training but could be result of raceday injury on January 19
“Location of deceased animal: Barn 4 Stall 47”

4-year-old Flanker Valley, February 2, Tampa Bay, training

Standardbred Dandee Diamond, February 4, Pompano
“colitis” removal cost: $250

5-year-old Silver Cloud, February 5, Tampa Bay 9

2-year-old Recall Dynaformer, February 8, Gulfstream 4

3-year-old Nicki Starshine, February 8, Gulfstream 10
“Location of deceased animal: Gulfstream Park Pit”

6-year-old Mezuman, February 10, Calder, training
“possible heart attack/ruptured aorta…died on track”

4-year-old Favorite Return, February 11, Tampa Bay
“severe colic”

Standardbred Toned Lady, February 12, Pompano
“laminitis/founder”

5-year-old Grass Blade, February 13, Calder, training
“Cause of Death: Humanitarian”
“Removed by: Lowe’s Dead Animal Removal”

Standardbred Fire in the Night, February 14, Pompano

6-year-old Hopper, February 15, Tampa Bay
“severe colic”

3-year-old Siren’s Secret, February 15, Calder 5 (euthanized February 18)

4-year-old Vero’s Hero, February 16, Gulfstream 1

3-year-old Dream for Dean, February 20, Calder, training
“Destroyed by: L Valentino” “Removed by: Lowe’s Dead Animal Removal”

2-year-old Ghost Tour, February 21, Tampa Bay, training

3-year-old Ya No Esta, February 21, Calder 3
“multiple fractures of both sesamoids”
“Removed by: Lowe’s Dead Animal Removal”

4-year-old Body of Evidence, February 22, Hialeah 2
“fractured carpus and metacarpal”

3-year-old Scouts Diva, February 22, Hialeah 10
“fractured carpus”

3-year-old Apollo Ono, February 23, Hialeah 6

2-year-old Vine Ripened, February 27, Tampa Bay
“Time Of Incident: 3:30 am”

4-year-old Run in Aruba, March 7, Calder 4
“fetlock joint luxation, suspensory ligament disruption”
“Destroyed by: H. Carroll”

2-year-old Holy Wildcat, March 8, Gulfstream 7

3-year-old Lewis’ Son, March 9, Gulfstream, training

3-year-old Minnie Bear, March 13, Gulfstream, training

4-year-old J Rose Gal, March 14, Tampa Bay 1

3-year-old Broadway Peyton, March 15, Tampa Bay 6

Standardbred Seton Hall, March 15, Pompano 5
“comminuted fracture, proximal fracture”

3-year-old Dee Ray, March 19, Calder, training
“Removed by: Lowe’s Dead Animal Removal”

4-year-old Gadget Girl, March 19, Gulfstream, training

3-year-old Vengeful, March 23, Gulfstream 2

3-year-old Art of the Game, March 28, Gulfstream 8
“Location of deceased animal: Horse Pit”

2-year-old Sea of Faces, March 29, Gulfstream, training

images (11)

Of the 23 flat-track deaths, 10 were originally reported (on the Equibase charts) as merely “vanned off,” 1 as “returned lame,” and another as “fell…but walked off under her own power.” Worse, 2 seemingly finished without incident. Only 9 of the 21 were listed as “broke down” (racing-speak for dead). Industry deceit laid bare, again.

37 Comments

Leave a Comment

  1. I’m so sick of this evil business! Hope it all goes under soon! People get out of this aniquated animal torture business!

  2. http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/racetracks/10/churchill-downs

    Patrick, I don’t know what your policy is regarding speaking directly about your blog and its goals through commenting at horseracing Web sites, but some of the people commenting under this “Blood-Horse” article might be very interested in knowing more.

    This scum is just one of the many unethical trainers, just a crook, really, operating here in CA. A paltry fine, which is TAX-DEDUCTIBLE, and two months ban. We know that it will be business as usual in the Avila barn as his assistant(s) will just continue to do what he tells them to do by phone calls, texting, etc.

    In most racing jurisdictions in the world, the fine would have been in the tens of thousands, the ban would be in years, and in some jurisdictions these criminals would be banned for life and receive such stiff fines that they’d have to spend the rest of their lives trying to pay them off.

    American racing is a cruel joke and abused and dead racehorses are the butt of this vicious game.

    So, would you prefer that word about Horseracing Wrongs be spread by the blog’s followers, or would you prefer to comment yourself in this and other threads at US racing Web sites? I wanted to check with you before representing you secondhand, so to speak. I imagine you aren’t too welcome at B-H, etc…

  3. OK, Patrick. Will do. In a cruel irony, Masochistic (what a name for a racehorse, huh?) just won at Santa Anita and Avila is the trainer of record. I commented on this insanity at B-H. My middle name is Elisabeth and I use that at sites with other Kari Johnsons. I’ll monitor B-H and elsewhere where likeminded people are commenting and try to help spread the word about HW. Horse lovers AND some gamblers are getting fed up. As you know too well, this is pretty depressing and I admit in advance I won’t be as steady and consistent as you are!

    • Thanks for providing the link, Kari…I just read about trainer Avila and the whole thing is disgusting. For those who want the story short and sweet, the CHRB slapped Avila with a 60-day suspension and a 10K fine on Feb 27 because Avila’s horse Masochistic was found to have Ace in his system after a race last March. Yet, one day after the suspension was handed down – on Feb 28 – “Avila is Defiant in Face of Suspension” when he runs the same horse! What a joke.

      In another BH news snippet, trainer Rudy Rodriguez received a 25-day suspension and a $2500 fine because two of his horses had Banamine in their systems on race day. One horse, March of 2013…the other horse, April, 2013. 2013!! During his suspension, his brother (and assistant) will take over the stable. Another joke.

  4. Every racehorse death is unnecessary, sickening, tragic. Yet there are individual elements of each racehorse’s death that seem an added insult…to me, at least. Like the little babies – the two-year-olds – that die racing. And the horses that are made to come back after lay-offs from injuries or even retirement…only to suffer further injury and then death. Then there are those that made so much money for their “masters” but it was never enough.

    Run in Aruba, 2009 bay gelding, a stakes winner…he made 187K. “Destroyed”.

    Silver Cloud, 2008 chestnut gelding, also a stakes winner, earned over 281K. Dead.

    Suzzona, 2004 chestnut mare, a multiple stakes winner, 54 starts for 653K. Dead, her body dumped in the “horse pit”.

    Raised for Speed, 2005 chestnut gelding, 57 starts and earnings of 407K. Now just a carcass in the “horse pit”.

    Vero’s Hero, winner of 107K…this 2009 bay gelding was a DNF on 1-20-14, when he fell over Raised for Speed. Vero’s Hero survived that race, unlike Raised for Speed. Vero’s Hero ran again on 2-5-14. And he ran again on 2-16-14…this time, he broke down and fell. And died.

    • Joy,

      I agree with you completely.

      Adding more insult to injury was the following attitude in the article from Paulick Report. 2/28/2015

      No mention of the importance of the safety of the horses. The managers focus was the safety of the people and the money.This truly shows their attitude.

      ___________________________________________.

      Gulfstream Park cancelled its live program after the fifth race Saturday afternoon due to torrential rainstorms and thunderstorms in Broward and Miami-Dade County.

      Racing will resume Sunday with a 12:30 p.m. first race post.

      “The rain just didn’t stop and, for the safety of our customers, jockeys, horsemen and employees, we felt it best to cancel the races for the remainder of the day,” said Gulfstream Park General Manager P.J. Campo.

      Campo said both the $200,000 Fasig-Tipton Swale (G2) and the $150,000 Palm Beach (G3), scheduled to be run Saturday as races 10 and 11, will now be run Saturday, March 7 along with the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Handicap (G2).

      • Seven Stars was shaking badly before race. I wonder what that means.

        Drugs ? Pain ?

        More abuse at Aqueduct. March 1st

        Seven Stars was standing still, front legs were visibily shaking badly before being put in the gate for the race
        Aqueduct race #5

        it was snowing still bad weather

        25,000 claiming race

        Seven Stars came in last

        Had a Lay off dec. 7th

        S. dutrw was trainer.

        More abuse.

        Horse was in no shape to run.

        Of course, none of them are.

    • More Blatant abuse at the track today that I understand kills the most horses.

      As I write, ON HRTV I am watching a race at Aqueduct where there are horses that are racing with snow coming down and the track looks terrible. THe visibility is poor. Slush and snow and ice.

      the commentators remark was that the “Track looks miserable” but “the horse looks like he is digging it”

      Seriously ?????????

      The lack of compassion in these people is staggering !!!

      Many years ago, they shut down all the East Coast tracks in the winter for safety reasons.

      OF course, 30 to 40 years ago they did not even race 2 year olds

      • I just cannot believe that they conduct racing in such dreadful weather conditions. The risk of horses slipping is high. If some other racetracks shut down racing in dreadful winter weather conditions for safety reasons, then why is that not the policy for every racetrack. Another classic example of a wrongdoing under self regulation. AQUEDUCT THAT SINISTER RACETRACK THAT REEKS OF HORSE TORTURE AND HORSE DEATH. Who are these monsters running Aqueduct?

  5. The corruption is mindboggling. The suffering and destruction of the horses is chilling.

    And it takes 2 years for Rudy Rodriguez to get his slap on the wrist ! Yes, Joy, what a joke.

  6. Racing in the winter and especially in freezing weather and snow has got to be one of the saddest spectacles in the whole sorry affair. This would have been unthinkable before satellite wagering. With a declining horse population, declining gambling on racing, etc. I think advocacy of and lobbying for reducing > eventually halting winter racing is a really feasible goal in the near run. Little steps!

    • Kari, I doubt if winter racing will go away. I have previously posted that there are very few tracks that have winter racing. Why does it continue? Because the winter months are the most profitable for those tracks….yes, racing really is all about the money!

      I wish I agreed with you about taking “small steps” in order to ” clean up” racing. However, racing is sinister and corrupt from top to bottom. Whenever you mix money and animals, the animals always end up losing. There is only one way to “clean up” racing…..make it go away by stopping the betting.

    • Kari,

      I agree that winter racing needs to stop. it was horrible watching the horses run while the snow was coming down, the visibility was terrible, the track was snow, slush and ice, and i saw one horse whose front legs were shaking badly as she stood in front of the gate. She ran last in the race. One announcer was laughing and joking about the weather as he was in California at Santa Anita.

      THe race was at Aqueduct where so many horses have been killed.

  7. I would love to see Aqueduct shut down permanently, not only for the winter meet. I was a racing fan years ago, before the introduction of the internet, and before I had any knowledge of the real facts; the thousands of poor horses that fatally break down or become injured, being pumped full of drugs, running horses that are injured, and the blatant abuse that takes place daily. After seeing so many beautiful throughbreds break down, I just couldn’t bear my heart breaking anymore. Not to mention that 2 year old throughbreds should never be raced, as their bones are not fully formed at that age. It is a recipe for disaster. But it is a comfort that the crowds at the track today are mostly retired gamblers over the age of 67. There are very few young people there. They are not able to attract young people primarily because they are knowledgeable of the abuse and want no part of it. Racetracks continue to shut down, and I take comfort in knowing the sport is dying, but not soon enough for me. I wish PETA, and the Humane Society would continue their assault and exposure of the cruelty behind the scenes. If it weren’t for Horseracing wrongs, I would never have realized the scope of the needless deaths and carnage that exist at every track in the country, and how these beautiful creatures are treated so poorly, as a dispensable item. I support the retirement charities financially, but is only a ripple in the water, as so much more needs to be done. Marlene Thornley

    • I was never a racing fan, but my mother did attend the horseraces way back when it was the ‘in’ thing and when the clientle was more upscale. I am like you in the sense, I wanted to find a group or an organization, that I get involved with that was against horseracing and I couldn’t find anything of the sort at the time. It was about the same time I got a Facebook page ( about 2 years ago or so) that I started doing a search and Horseracing Wrongs showed up. Started looking around and reading the posts, and was facinated at the persons, and there weren’t as many vocal voices as there are today, that when the pro-racing people would come to the site to try and destroy the work that HW was doing. The people of racing evidently found out about Horseracing Wrongs and decided they were going to sabotage and ‘bully’ the advocates of this site. At first, I thought why are they not ‘blocking’ these people that are using profanities, insults, you name it. But, I kept observing and there were two persons, in particular, that stood out and they are Mary Johnson and Joy Aten. No matter how many of these people, or how abusive, insulting these people were, these two ladies answered every post with an educated and dignified answer. I called them the Bruce Lee of Horseracing Wrongs because of the way they handled these persons who tried to discredit them and kept throwing in, more and more people (even made up other alias’) to ‘take on’ the HW advocates, as the rest of them couldn’t come up with anything other than name calling, really. That’s when I realized, this is what I am looking for. Persons who have the knowledge, education, and know how to back up their experiences with facts to take on the very difficult task to end this so called ‘sport’. And they don’t use all the profanities to fill in for their lack of what to say like the racing enthusiasts do. There is a difference between ignorance and education.
      Then when I saw more in depth and found this blog and what dedication Patrick Battuello and Nicole put into this, has been most encouraging to me. I learned so much and now I can utilize the tools and education that they and others provide here, to help me with more of a voice, as before, I couldn’t advocate properly without the proper ‘tools’ so I am able to speak facutally about why Horseracing needs to end.
      I am very grateful and thankful for this site and persons who are going all the way to fight the fight to achieve the same goal…..Stop the cruelty.

      • Debra Ann,
        I truly believe that most of the racing public are totally unaware of the abuse, drugging, and horrible mistreatment of the throughbreds at tracks across the country. Many of them are retired, occasional gamblers who maybe go to the track for a day out. If they see a race where a horse breaks down, they think it is an infrequent event, and don’t realize that this event is happening at tracks across the country. They don’t realize the massive numbers of breakdowns and injuries which are occurring with great frequency. Ignorance is bliss, and truly, many gamblers are uninformed and uneducated as to what occurs on the backside of the track. I could never bet on another race, knowing what I know today. Most people wouldn’t want to see any harm come to these beautiful, innocent, creatures who give their lives on the track for someone’s entertainment and money. I know that I don’t want to see any animal give their lives for my entertainment. It is morally wrong, and I could never live with myself. Only through educating the uninformed, will the tide turn, and discourage people from betting in the first place. Bet on sports where no one’s life is at stake. It is going to take many little steps of progress to end this cruel game. They could start with outlawing the use of whips. I have seen horses whipped so cruelly that they break down at the wire. It is sickening. Second, if you are found guilty of drugging a horse, your trainer license is pulled INDEFINITELY!! If your horse is being treated for an injury it must be documented, especially if just claimed. Many times if a horse is claimed, its documentation doesn’t follow to the new trainer. If a trainer is found guilty of neglect of a horse, his license if suspended INDEFINITELY. Get rid of the pool of abusive trainers. The ones, and they know who they are, who are guilty of sending horses 9 and 10 years old, who need to be retired out to race. So many of these horses have broken down, and should have been retired. The throughbred Saginaw comes to mind. I have emailed a few of these trainers at the inhumanity of their decisions. Third, get rid of all claiming races under $50,000.00. The claiming races of $5000.00 and above, are where the horses with lesser ability are placed, or may be injured, and they want to unload them. One of the worst tracks is Finger Lakes in New York where all the horses with little ability end up. Lastly, let your voice of outrage be heard by writing letters to the Govenor’s of each respective state. I have written Govenor Cuomo numerous times over the insane number of breakdowns at Aqueduct. He has responded to my letters, and I believe that he would love to shut down Aqueduct. There is power in numbers. Again, we need to take baby steps, before we can run, and be happy with small victories. As Patrick has said, “we will get there”… Marlene Thornley

    • Marlene,

      I didn’t know much about the Horseracing Industry, because it wasn’t an interest of mine whatsoever. I am passionate about other interests, tennis, martial arts, and football. I believe you are right in what you say, that the public really doesn’t know what lies behind this so called ‘sport’ of horseracing. I found out, that it isn’t exactly a ‘popular’ thing to want to extinguish horseracing, so I felt pretty much alone with finding others who wanted the same goal as I did. For someone like myself, who never attended a horseracing event or owned a horse, so someone like myself going to persons who were associated at one time or another with horseracing became difficult, because I wasn’t ‘one of them’, even though we were fighting for the same thing. Strange to me, but that has been my experience thus far.
      I also believe, that the ‘sport’ of horseracing is burying itself with all of the ‘dirty secrets’ and their illegal antics with the ‘big wigs’ becoming today’s top news at times, that people are starting to pay some attention, or at least questioning it. The Kentucky Derby is the big one, and that seems to be what people ‘hear’. It’s not all roses, that’s for sure.
      Horseracing Wrongs has been a tremendous help in providing information, and I’ve certainly will continuing learning from it. Persons such as yourself, is providing and advocating for this cruetly to end, and for me, that is quite reassuring. I believe that it will come to an end, and it may be a slow process, but it will happen. Keep fighting the fight.
      Thank you, Marlene for responding to me directly. Much appreciated. Debra-Anne

  8. Kathleen,
    The horse that was shaking could’ve also been feeling the cold very badly or it could also be a sign of fear. I came across a similar scenario during a very hot summer when the horse seemed to be shaking all over and it continued on and did not stop, so I then questioned the trainer who responded in an obnoxious manner. Then went to the Stewards (with whom I was not familiar as I was visiting interstate) with my concern, said they’d look into it, patted me on the head. Several minutes later i was escorted off the track. Next day i contacted the CEO of horseracing in that State and he apologized profusely – just more pathetic lip service. What was done for that horse – absolutely nothing. They don’t give a damn.

    • Carolyn,

      Here is what I found about Seven Stars, the horse that was Badly shaking before the Aqueduct race.

      This horse was on a layoff for 558 days. she has won $96, 515 and now they want to get rid of her.

      Owner: James A. Riccio

      Jockey: Israel O. Rodriguez
      Trainer: Sydney Dutrow

      Has had 10 starts.

      Raced in 2012, 2013 , 2014, and now 2015

      three firsts, 2 seconds and two thirds. sunday she came in dead last and made $235.00 while clearly in bad shape before the race..

      http://www.equibase.com/profiles/Results.cfm?type=Horse&refno=8911598&registry=T

      last race was Claiming race $25,000

      _____________________________________________________________

      Back in Oct 2014

      Belmont’s Wednesday Highlight Horse: Seven Stars Second off the long layoff

      Seven Stars is making her second start back from a layoff that spanned 558 days, so clearly there has been an issue with her. But assuming all is well, she has plenty going for her in this spot. Not only does her trainer do quite well bringing horses back on this kind of short rest (98 rating off of layoffs between 15-25 days), he has a perfect 100 rating with older horses in lower-level claiming races. On top of that, Seven Stars enters here as the fastest horse in the race on dirt. She earned TFUS Speed Figures of 84 and 88 for her back-to-back wins over this distance before the layoff last year. That 88 figure is faster than any figure that the ML favorite has ever run.

      Seven Stars still has to run her race in this spot, and there may be some questions surrounding her current form following that long break, but it is comforting to know that her trainer does well with horses like this, and it never hurts to get a fair price on the fastest horse.”

      http://www1.drf.com/static/entries/01/eAQU01.html?rn=402606

      _______________________________________

      Comforting to know ?????? Are they serious ??? this horse was in no shape to run

      http://timeformusblog.com/2014/10/01/belmonts-wednesday-highlight-horse-seven-stars-second-off-the-long-layoff/

      • More on Seven Stars

        Seven Stars has been in four claiming races since 10/1/2014

        10/2014 she came in 3rd place
        11/6/2014 she came in 1st place
        3/1/2015 she came in 8th place

        There was something clearly wrong with her as I watched her legs shake badly before the race.

      • Kathleen this mare’s history is very strange – 3 firsts, 2 seconds and 2 thirds out of 9 starts and won $96,280 – well what a fantastic strike rate that appears to be! Her foaling date tells me that she’s almost 5 years of age (and thanks for the link). She started as a 2 year old and she averaged 3 starts each year. No, she definitely has a problem. 558 days is about 1 year and 6 months. I have come across similar and the reason is more often than not an injury or a condition. Another reason I rarely come across is that the owners are going through financial problems. Official vets have to give the horse a thorough vetting before being permitted to race after such a long break. This mare amazes me because she has had such few starts yet has done well year after year. The racing authorities and their vets should be querying as to why she only has just a few starts each year. What a brave girl she was to survive that race in shocking weather conditions at that DEATH RACETRACK CALLED AQUEDUCT. If I’ve got it right she last raced on 6 Nov 2014, well that’s a four months’ break which is also a query after only one start. She obviously had been in training pre-race but she was not race fit which are two different things. She’s also in the high risk category for a catastrophic injury. Dr Chris Riggs, Chief Veterinarian of the Hong Kong Race Club gave a talk at the British Equine Veterinarian Association Congress in 2014 – here’s the link
        http://www.thehorse.com/articles/34672/preventing-injuries-in-thoroughbred-racehorses?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=lameness&utm_campaign=10-08-2014

        I believe she was highly likely shaking from fear because for most of the year she does not race (I sure hope she’s in a paddock/field) and it must be awful waiting to race when she does it rarely, whereas, other horses are so used to it that it’s not such a shock to their system. Others would argue that she’s lucky only racing a few times each year but I think it’s more damaging to a horse. I’m speculating that the reason no one has claimed her is that there’s a big question mark on just a few starts each year which is very odd. These thoroughbreds are pushed far beyond their limitations and due to their great self preservation and wanting to survive, they put on an incredibly brave front whilst in pain. As for the racing commentator’s remarks, I’m with you Kathleen “comforting to know” it just beggars belief – they’re such a breed of their own. Could only be employed in the horseracing industry.

      • Carolyn

        I have never seen a horses shake like that standing still. Her legs were moving like she was being shook or like she was on a train trying to help her balance. it was quite a violent shaking and i could not understand why the announcers were not talking about her shaking as they were talking about her and why she was not being pulled from the race. In Her last race before she was out 558 days she came in last.

        I read that she actually had really fast times in other races so coming in 8th makes no sense unless she was injured. then in this race she came in last so I do think that she is injured but they are trying to sell her anyway. I absolutely think that there is something wrong with her and that she is at high risk for a catastrophic injury

      • Speaking of horse racing on March 4th 2015

        there were fourteen horse races today at the Meadows track and Casino that i witnessed and the weather was horrible. Snow, ice and more snow. the tracks looked very dangerous. Some of them looked like a sheet of ice.

        it was horse and buggy and whip.

        the greed of this industry knows no bounds and no shame. I have never seen such a terrible track.

        I tbelieve that some of these people are pure evil.

  9. Mary, I agree with you that US racing can’t be cleaned up but neither do I think it can be made to go away all at once. The ugliness of winter racing, the insanity of it, make it a possible way to introduce the notion of its elimination to an audience that might not feel the same way on a lovely spring or summer day. Regarding halting betting, one of my contentions is that bettors are being rooked–the deceit of racing extends to them, too–and informing bettors of how they are being played for suckers is just one way, one of the little steps, that can combine to eliminate US racing.

    • Kari, you are correct that racing won’t go away all at once. We need to continue to shine a light on the dirty secrets in racing, and there are many of them, until those who gamble are completely turned off by the atrocities. I spent many years on the backside of a low level track and, even on a nice, warm Saturday, there were very few people in the grandstand. There were times that I felt I was in a ghost town. However, most of those who gamble on the horses do so in racinos/casinos. Those are the people that must be reached. Just to be clear, I am not against gambling but I encourage those, who want to gamble, to gamble on baseball, football, soccer, etc.

      I firmly believe that most of those who gamble on racing have no idea of the atrocities that occur behind closed doors. Racing has a very glamorous side. Just think of the Kentucky Derby where Hollywood royalty struts their stuff. The bright, brilliant smiles make you want to grab for your sunglasses! It is simply a charade.

      Yes, I agree that the bettors are being played for suckers so it is important to keep the pressure on. However, the bottom line is that, if you want to make changes, you have to talk with your wallet. Imploring people to do the right thing for their horses just doesn’t resonate. The lure of finishing first is just too great.

  10. 4-year-old Good Mother Fran, January 6, Gulfstream, training
    “Location of deceased animal: Horse Pit”
    HORSE PIT – just throw them in

    4-year-old Golden Archway, January 11, Tampa Bay 3
    “broke cannon bone, euthanized on track”
    “Carcass Removed: 9:55 pm”
    CARCASS – yes just worthless remains

    3-year-old Zesty Perry, January 16, Hialeah, training
    “backed out of gate during training – flipped and hit head – seizures, severe”
    “accidental death”
    ACCIDENTAL DEATH – how convenient to categorise this as an “accident”.
    Horse obviously was in fear to back out of the gate. “flipped” highly likely
    it reared right up and then over to hit its head so severely that it had seizures.
    She’d had 10 starts and appears to have been distressed (they like to call it
    “fractious”) in the gates in some previous race starts. Screaming out for help.

    2-year-old Jmf La Panchista, January 17, Hialeah 5
    “broken back during race”
    WONDER how long it was before a vet got to this baby filly to put her out of her misery
    after breaking its back. Racing 2 year olds is obscene!

    6-year-old More Nuggets, January 18, Hialeah 3
    “compound fracture”
    “Location of deceased animal: In maintenance area of track”
    MAINTENANCE area? Maintenance workers walk past it, just another dead racehorse and no doubt they’ve become desensitized to it all.
    She began racing as a 2 year old and had 43 starts which means she appears to have been in the high risk category of suffering an injury according to Dr Chris Riggs, BVSc, PhD, DEO, Dipl. ECVS, MRCVS, head of Veterinary Clinical Services at the Hong Kong Jockey Club when he spoke at the 2014 British Equine Veterinary Association Congress held Sept. 10-13 in Birmingham, U.K.
    However, she was a decent money earner – keep her going…..

    2-year-old Heavenly Champion, January 27, Gulfstream
    probably training but could be result of raceday injury on January 19
    “Location of deceased animal: Barn 4 Stall 47″
    PROBABLY TRAINING BUT COULD BE – it appears that for 8 days this baby was suffering from an injury sustained in his last race but it could’ve also sustained injury in training. Did it train after its last race? Horse located in Stall 47 – one wonders if it just died or was a vet called in and then euthanased? No disclosure as to nature of injury resulting in its death. It appears he broke slowly at his previous start on 21 Dec 2013 and broke slowly again on 19 Jan. I’ve interpreted “broke slowly” as meaning jumping out of the gates slowly. If this is correct then this is often indicative that horse has something amiss. States he was PROVED NO FACTOR in his last race – well why was he there?

    Standardbred Dandee Diamond, February 4, Pompano
    “colitis” removal cost: $250
    Could not find this horse which was obviously suffering from colitis.
    “removal cost: $250” very important to disclose this piece of information it seems.
    Was it euthanased? This is what should be disclosed.

    4-year-old Favorite Return, February 11, Tampa Bay
    “severe colic”
    SEVERE colic which usually means early signs of colic were not noticed. Appears horse died an agonizingly painful death given no disclosure of it being euthanased.

    5-year-old Grass Blade, February 13, Calder, training
    “Cause of Death: Humanitarian”
    “Removed by: Lowe’s Dead Animal Removal”
    HUMANITARIAN is officially stated as the cause of death. Well what does that mean?
    Appears it was more important to state that the horse’s body was removed.

    6-year-old Hopper, February 15, Tampa Bay
    “severe colic”
    SEVERE colic which usually means early signs of colic were not noticed. Appears horse died an agonizingly painful death given no disclosure of it being euthanased.

    3-year-old Siren’s Secret, February 15, Calder 5 (euthanized February 18)
    DELAY so it took 3 days to make the decision to euthanase this baby.
    What was the reason for the delay; a career ending injury, horse no longer viable, too expensive to treat horse back to health? No disclosure of nature of injury/condition resulting in its ultimate death. Chart says filly gave way and just 6 starts for this filly.

    2-year-old Vine Ripened, February 27, Tampa Bay
    “Time Of Incident: 3:30 am”
    INCIDENT it was an incident folks which occurred at 3.30 in the morning. No disclosure of the nature of the “incident”. No disclosure as to the cause of death. This is unacceptable.

    One horse “fell…but walked off under her own power.” This information appears to imply that although horse fell she was able to walk off – giving the public the impression that she’ll be okay and then we find out she died.

    This is what goes on in horseracing.

  11. I’m glad to see that so many people are passionate about the horses. I certainly agree that there are bad owners, bad trainers, and racing of drugged or injured horses that continues and should be stopped. But there are good owners and trainers who keep the horses they race to breed the next generation, and who dont beleive in getting false results or cheating with drugs, or in having their horses hurt. We aren’t trying to ban cycling, UFC, football, baseball etc or any other competative sport where there is rampant drug use, cheating (the football air scandal), or continued participation of injured players (multiple concussions in football, hockey, boxing ie Mohammed Ali) – so why would we ban horse racing? What we should do is push for stronger punishments for drug violations, enforcement of existing laws banning use of drugs, and unified licensing of all racing jurisdictions so that one banned trainer or owner can’t just set up shop a few states away. Let the people who love their horses and want to enjoy racing keep it, and let’s force the cheaters and abusers out.

  12. Thanks Patrick. I think many athletes feel forced to continue because they don’t have any other option that could provide for them financially. especially where they weren’t lucky enough to have a great education. Many of us stay at jobs we don’t like just to make ends meet – that sure feels like being forced, doesn’t it? Horses are just like people and they don’t all like to do the same things – some like to train and to race; where others don’t. The ones that really like it don’t have to be whipped or asked to go fast or to do their best. Generally as they get in better shape with gradually increasing the number of miles they jog, they start speeding up all on their own. The horses that don’t like it shouldn’t be racing, and trainers shouldn’t rush horses to go faster than they are ready for.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s