Amid much media coverage of its current killing season (even the major networks are chiming in), and in advance of a HW-supported protest today, Santa Anita strikes again: In the 3rd, the Equibase writer recounts, “Eskenforadrink…took a bad step, was pulled up in distress, and was vanned off.” The 3-year-old was subsequently euthanized, making her the 20th horse killed either racing or training at Santa Anita since December 26 – and 22nd death there overall (two others have died from what the industry conveniently dismisses as “non-racing” causes). This one comes after track-surface guru Mick Peterson was flown in for two days of in-depth study and analysis (“segregation of the material” – please). So much for that. BloodHorse caught up with Peterson on his way back to Kentucky and recorded this reaction:
“But when I heard about (the incident Saturday), my response was, What the hell do we do?” Ah, at last some honesty.
Around the same time, but with significantly less interest (cheap horse, cheap track), this for Lily Ain’t Foolin in the 9th at Parx: “…suffered a catastrophic injury and fell on the turn and was subsequently euthanized.”
Also, among the several other horses who either “bled” (from the nostrils, that is) or were “vanned off” yesterday was 3-year-old Courtyard in the 5th at Fair Grounds: “…lagged at the rear…rallied outside under a left-handed whip…and prevailed under strong urging then pulled up in distress after the race and was vanned off.”
Whipped to a win (“under strong urging”), then “pulled up in distress and vanned off.” Horseracing – proudly abusing and killing horses for over 150 years.