“Over-Cropped His Horse Approximately a Dozen Times Without a Pause”

From the Los Alamitos Stewards Minutes, January 1:

“Jockey Santiago Mendez was in to review his ride in the eighth race from the previous Sunday evening, when he over-cropped his horse, #5 “Ivy’s Storm,” approximately a dozen times without a pause. Mr. Mendez offered no excuse other than he blanked out and kept hitting the horse and forgetting the rule as he was in the heat of battle for the win. The following ruling was issued.

JOCKEY SANTIAGO MENDEZ IS FINED $100 FOR VIOLATION OF CALIFORNIA HORSE RACING BOARD RULE #1688(b)(6) (USE OF RIDING CROP-MORE THAN THREE TIMES IN SUCCESSION WITHOUT GIVING THE HORSE A CHANCE TO RESPOND-FIRST OFFENSE WITHIN THE PREVIOUS 60 DAY PERIOD).”

“Over-cropped his horse approximately a dozen times without a pause” – “no excuse other than he blanked out” – $100 fine.

Speechless.

The “battle” he was in, by the way, was for a share of $20,000; 2-year-old Ivys Storm finished 2nd, earning $4,500 for her “connections,” including, of course, Mr. Mendez.

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9 Comments

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  1. “Over-cropped”. Such benign words for what it really is – excessive whipping. Yes, the public has caught on to the abuse your industry doles out and you’re desperately attempting to minimize it. Too late. We know.

  2. A pathetic $100 fine! Are you fu**ing kidding me???
    He should be in jail for animal abuse!
    If I had the money I would actually sue this jockey for animal abuse and bring it into the court system away from the protective commissions (protective of the jockey not the horse).
    This would set a precedent.
    There is not one judge or jury that would view that tape and not come to any other conclusion than that of animal cruelty.
    No other animal business in this country gets away with repeatedly beating an animal like that!
    Even if you saw somebody walking in the dog park, beat their dog like that, they would be charged!
    I despise this industry. It has got to go.
    I so wish that PETA or Mercy For Animals would file an animal cruelty charge in the court system.
    Let’s bring this animal abuser to justice.

  3. Not only is the fine laughable, but it’s actually an endorsement of cruelty.
    This is a horrific business of exploitation, and abuse of a sentiment being.

  4. SANTIAGO MENDEZ claims he “blanked out” – he knew what he was doing, he was conscious of his actions. What a nerve this cur has to give an excuse for terrorizing this 2 year old filly, relentlessly beating her with a whip and not giving her a chance to even respond. Most of the time jockeys hit the horses in the sensitive flank area and this is in breach of the International Agreement on Breeding, Racing and Wagering. Compared with the human, the flank area is similar to the rib area under the arm.

    In IVY STORM’s next start on Jan 23 she came home last and earned $nil. Prior to the flogging by Santiago Mendez she’d had 7 starts winning twice, 2nd place 3 times and 3rd place twice. Her spirit has been broken.

    These horses are doing their best, they become fatigued in the final stages of the race, some are sore, carrying pre-existing injuries/conditions and/or cannot cope with the stressful demands of racing and these jockeys think nothing of inflicting pain upon them both physical and psychological. These horses are being beaten with a whip when their central nervous system is telling them to slow down which is nature’s way of protecting the horse from injury/breakdowns. But, the whipping forces the horse to keep up the momentum and the horse just cannot escape this brutal treatment. Speed kills and horseracing is maiming and killing racehorses every single day. In a New York Times investigation it is reported that in the US, twenty-nine (29) horses die each week on the racetrack (Bogdanich et al. 2012).

    There needs to be an acceptance of the natural limits of the horse’s body and mind. The racing industry has no respect whatsoever for the equine’s capabilities and basic needs. Today’s society no longer accepts animal cruelty and the fact that the industry chooses to ignore this indicates its shameful inability to face reality and evolve.

    • I think it’s important to be able to look in the mirror and know that you did your best. The owners, trainers, jockeys, and everyone that has any dealing with these horses need to be stopped. Since money plays such an important role in their lives the system has to change, fines should be greatly increased. I think each state currently makes their own rules/regulations, and it’s imperative, in my opinion, that it should be nation wide (federal), so that changes can be made. One thing that must stop is training and running these young horses…2 years in much too early and many end up dead. The whole system is so damn flawed so it won’t be an easy fix.

      • Agree with you whole heartedly, Georgiegirl10. Just to add that fines are useless, “they” = jockey and the connections have so much money that a fine means nothing, they laugh about it. Suspension of licence for a lengthy period of time might be a deterrent. And let’s not forget that the jockey receives certain “instructions” from the trainer and/or the owner of the racehorse. A young apprentice jockey once told me that if he didn’t get stuck into the horse with a whip he wouldn’t get rides!

  5. Right on Georgie, Carolyn. Since the industry polices themselves via possibly corrupt racing commissions who are mere solidifiers of the abusive system – window dressers so to speak.
    This industry is not being held accountable to anybody, but themselves.
    It’s the racehorses paying the ultimate price for this system that not only endorses beatings, but deaths as well.
    A Federal Commissioner and a NEUTRAL drug testing oversight USADA was needed yesterday.
    Fines should be brought into the court system or to a central federal commissioner that can override the ridiculous state rules. There is no need for state rules especially when they are using the Federal Interstate Horse Racing Act.
    So it’s okay for them to take in billions of dollars via this act which is federally applied, but not okay to use a federally appointed Commissioner to set rules? See what I mean?
    These people are organized smut.

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