Today the US Congress is hearing testimony into horse racing by invited members of the industry, or might we say, the ones who accepted their invitation.
That’s not all.
Today the New York Times publishes another blockbuster report on US horse racing called “Big Purses, Sore Horses, and Death“.
Written by Joe Drape, Walt Bogdanich, Rebecca R. Ruiz and Griffin Palmer, it begins:
As he trained for his first race, at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, the 3-year-old thoroughbred Wes Vegas galloped on the track most mornings and had two timed workouts. But his handlers also prepared him in another way: In the month before the race, records show, he received 10 intravenous injections of potent drugs for pain, one the day before he ran; two injections of a drug for joint disease; corticosteroid injections in his two front ankles; a sedative; and an ulcer drug.
For all the preparation, that first race, on March 3, turned out to be his last.
As he approached the first turn, Wes Vegas broke a leg and had to be euthanized.
Kentucky was recently criticized, or mourned, for voting against turning their racecourses in racinos. One voice in particular cried, “they will all just up and leave Kentucky and go to New York.”
Perhaps they will. Maybe they won’t. Change it is a-coming, and those changes will take place if a federal law pending before Congress has anything to say about. However, that law bans the use of raceday medications. If already in effect, that would not have saved Wes Vegas and all the other thousands of Thoroughbreds who suffer a similar fate.
Thank you New York Times for giving these issues the major platform they deserve.