The 10th race at Delta Downs Thursday night was the very first for 3-year-old Ragazza Ritmo. It was also her last. No, her racing people did not have a sudden change of heart; she is not today ambling carefree in some arcadian pasture, forever free from the chains, bits, and whips of the racetrack. In fact, her first race was her last race because she is dead. Equibase: “up close early from the inside, dueled up the backstretch, held a forward position entering the drive, fell and was euthanized.”

Recent deaths disclosed by the NYS Gaming Commission:

Frankies Rockngirl in the 1st at Batavia Friday – “took bad step after half; sustained fracture – ambulanced off track and euthanized.” Frankies Rockngirl was three.

Formal Event at Belmont Friday – “found deceased in stall; horse was under treatment by veterinarian for gastrointestinal issues.” Formal Event was three.

Bluegrass Flash in the 6th at Aqueduct Saturday – “sheath laceration; owners opted for euthanasia [next day].” Bluegrass Flash was seven.

And finally this from the Los Alamitos Stewards Minutes: “one equine death was reported this week [Nov 30-Dec 2] due to racing injuries” – identity withheld.

This is horseracing.

This morning, I wrote how the Racing Grinder never sleeps, even on slow days. But yesterday, as it turns out, was even worse than originally reported. I have confirmed that Holy Chrome, who was said (by Equibase) to have “[taken] a bad step, [been] vanned off” at Mountaineer, is dead – euthanized for her injury. That makes at least three kills on a day in which only seven tracks were live. End horseracing. Now.

Mondays and Tuesdays are this industry’s quietest days, with but a handful of tracks running. Still, the Killing Machine takes no breaks. Yesterday, this (Equibase):

In the 6th at Mahoning, Major Drama “dueled for the lead along the rail into the stretch, suffered a catastrophic injury to his left front leg, pulled up and was euthanized.” Major Drama was five; he was “For Sale” the day he died.

In the 7th at Parx, Warrior Lake “hustled to the front inside, stopped on the turn and was eased in the stretch. He subsequently returned to the paddock, collapsed and died.” Warrior Lake was only four – an adolescent. “Collapsed and died.”

This is horseracing.