My Majestic Rose is dead after “breaking down” while training at Keeneland last week. Speaking to Horse Racing Nation, which only covered this because My Majestic was coming off a “stakes” win (in other words, had she been one of the several more-pedestrian horses who die daily, there would not have been a peep), trainer Rodolphe Brisset said, “It hit me pretty hard. This one was one of the toughest I’ve ever had.”

From Fox Hill Farms (Facebook), June 13: “It was a sad morning for us at Fox Hill Farm and in the Larry Jones barn. We lost Battleofthebulge this morning. We do not know what happened. He was just getting tacked up to go out to the track and kept wanting to lay down. They let him lay down, and then he started hemorrhaging internally. It was a very severe hemorrhage with no chance of saving him. The vet could only guess that he perhaps had some disease. We are all extremely sad for Battle. He was a really nice, classy horse, and we hate that his life was claimed far too early. RIP…

Vile. Horseracing.

This morning, according to multiple sources, the 4-year-old American Currency suffered a “catastrophic injury” training at Santa Anita and is dead. He is Santa Anita’s 30th track-related kill since December 30 and the 36th dead horse overall.

Because American Currency is the fourth horse trained by Jerry Hollendorfer to die at SA, and coming as it has the morning after CNN ran a decidedly negative piece with the Hall of Famer Hollendorfer as its focus, Racing has an easy villain. In fact, there are reports that Hollendorfer will not be allowed to race any more horses at SA this weekend. This, of course, is just the latest distraction (rain, Lasix) advanced by an increasingly desperate industry. Horseracing kills horses – that’s all you need to know.

Psychedelicat, killed racing at Santa Anita Dec 30, 2018
Tank Team, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 4, 2019
Unusual Angel, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 4, 2019
Secret Street, killed training at Santa Anita Jan 8, 2019
Derby Treasure, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 11, 2019
Henry, dead at Santa Anita January 14, 2019
Noise Mandate, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 18, 2019
Amboseli, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 20, 2019
Like Really Smart, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 21, 2019
Last Promise Kept, killed racing at Santa Anita Jan 21, 2019
Ponchito, dead at Santa Anita January 22, 2019
Dancing Harbor, killed training at Santa Anita Jan 23, 2019
Spitfire, killed training at Santa Anita Jan 25, 2019
Mongolian Hunter, dead at Santa Anita January 28, 2019
Kid Cantina, killed racing at Santa Anita Feb 2, 2019
Comegowithme, killed racing at Santa Anita Feb 3, 2019
Jager Time, killed training at Santa Anita Feb 17, 2019
Unusual Rider, killed training at Santa Anita Feb 18, 2019
Hot American, killed racing at Santa Anita Feb 22, 2019
Battle of Midway, killed training at Santa Anita Feb 23, 2019
Just Forget It, killed training at Santa Anita Feb 23, 2019
Charmer John, killed training at Santa Anita Feb 24, 2019
Eskenforadrink, killed racing at Santa Anita Mar 2, 2019
Cooney, dead at Santa Anita March 4, 2019
Lets Light the Way, killed training at Santa Anita Mar 5, 2019
Princess Lili B, killed training at Santa Anita Mar 14, 2019
Arms Runner, killed racing at Santa Anita Mar 31, 2019
Rolling Shadow, dead at Santa Anita April 4, 2019
Commander Coil, killed training at Santa Anita May 17, 2019
Spectacular Music, killed racing at Santa Anita May 19, 2019
Kochees, killed racing at Santa Anita May 25, 2019
Current Times, dead at Santa Anita May 27, 2019
Derby River, killed training at Santa Anita June 5, 2019
Formal Dude, killed racing at Santa Anita June 8, 2019
Truffalino, killed racing at Santa Anita June 9, 2019
American Currency, killed training at Santa Anita June 22, 2019

The case of Tiz Willow, the 2-year-old who died of starvation at Golden Gate in January, was finally – why did it take almost five months? – adjudicated. But before I give the ruling, a reminder:

“Present were [Gustavo] Medina his translator Rob Cochran, investigator Mike Alford and CHRB Staff Counsel Rob Brodnik. Mr. Brodnik questioned Mr. Medina at length about his lack of care for the horse Tiz Willow, as did the Stewards. Mr. Medina had no explanation other than the other horses at the ranch wouldn’t let Tiz Willow eat. Even if that were true Mr. Medina had almost two months to remedy the situation. When given the opportunity to present witnesses on his behalf and generally defend himself he had little to say and no witnesses…but finally when prompted by the Stewards for some response, mumbled ‘I’m Sorry.’ A decision will be forthcoming.”

The ruling:

“Expired Exercise Rider/Owner Gustavo G. Medina is hereby deemed ineligible for licensing until February 28, 2022 pursuant to CHRB rule #1900 and fined the sum of $10,000 for failure to provide adequate care to the horse Tiz Willow from December 3, 2018 through January 25, 2019 and exercising horses without a valid license.

Further, it is the recommendation of this Board of Stewards that Gustavo G. Medina never be relicensed by the CHRB for an egregious violation of rule #1902.5 (Animal Welfare). The Stewards found Mr. Medina responsible for the inadequate care and feeding of [Tiz Willow], leading to the demise of that animal caused by malnutrition… The Stewards also considered the lack of remorse displayed by Mr. Medina.”

So, it would appear that Medina will at least have an opportunity to be a “horseman” again, even though the Board “recommends” that that never happens. When I questioned why not just a lifetime ban now, the CHRB replied that “the stewards can only suspend for the term of the license.” Imagine that – this monster could be right back at it in less than three years, if not in California, perhaps in some other state. And this says nothing of what he’s capable of doing to horses (or other animals) outside of Racing’s jurisdiction. Once again, this is what happens when the law (state animal-cruelty statutes) defers to industry. Vile, all the way around.