Fox Hunt breaks down in the 2-1/2 mile Dubai Gold Cup.

Tragedy strikes both runnings of the Dubai Gold Cup; American commentator says shameful

Fox Hunt breaks down in the 2-1/2 mile Dubai Gold Cup.
Fox Hunt breaks down in the 2-1/2 mile Dubai Gold Cup. The horse was later euthanized. Image by Virendra Saklani / Gulf News.


Tragedy struck the 2-1/2 mile Dubai Gold Cup (UAE-III) when Fox Hunt broke a leg and fell early in the race. However, as soon as it became clear that Fox Hunt had suffered a serious injury and could not be moved off the track in time, the stewards stopped the race. Fox Hunt was later euthanized.

Melvin Day, the Dubai Racing Club’s Senior Handicapper, said:

“A horse can break off any time, but I have not seen such an incident in a flat race.

“It can happen in a steeplechase. Quite an unusual happening. Rules stipulate that the race would be void as it is incomplete. The stewards act like policemen and their main concern is to ensure the safety of the horses and riders. It would be unfair to both the jockeys and the horses to start the race again.”

The decision was taken to rerun the Gold Cup at the end of the card. All horses who were to take part were each examined by racetrack veterinarians.

However, during the second running of the Gold Cup, two more horses, Grand Vent and U.S.-bred Bronze Cannon, were injured and pulled up. Two other horses in the race, Mikhail Glinka and Makani Bisty, were eased up by their jockeys, which probably saved their lives.

Ray Paulick reported on Twitter that Bronze Cannon was also euthanized, and Grand Vent is being treated for a leg injury.


Oddly — or sadly — an American horse racing commentator calling it “shameful”, tweeted that if what happened in Dubai had happened at Aqueduct, racing would have been shut down. Really?

So the tragedies in Dubai, horrible as they are, are worse than Aqueduct killing 21 horses since last November, for which it was neither shut down nor even cautioned insofar as we can see.

Not only that, but racing on the inner dirt track at Aqueduct where the fatalities reportedly occurred continued for another couple of weeks so more horses were put at risk and killed.

Then there’s this.

The number of fatalities at Aqueduct were so alarming that it took the Governor of New York to call an inquiry into the horses’ deaths, or absolutely nothing would have been done, at all.

Small wonder U.S. horse racing is seen as such a brutal and callous sport when those in the industry covering it make such remarks.


11 thoughts on “Tragedy strikes both runnings of the Dubai Gold Cup; American commentator says shameful”

  1. Thank you for your blog, this is so sad to me, and i will not support racing in any fashion what so ever. This has got to stop, slaughter is bad enough, soring is still going on, the poor mare being milked for her urine and confined.If the american people like ourselves continue to protest these happenings, maybe with the help of GOD, it can stop. Thanks to the NEW YORK GOVENOR FOR TAKING A STAND FOR THE HORSES, GOD BLESS YOU.


  2. Thank you for your post. Yesterday, I had the television on when Fox Hunt was fatally injured. I cannot even begin to describe the horrible sadness I felt, and still feel. Immediately after Fox Hunt went down, the track ran a banner at the bottom of the TV screen saying something to the effect that the race has been called off due to “an obstacle on the course.” I cried. That “obstacle” was a horse–a beautiful creature in a great deal of pain and fear. How devastating!

    And now, through your excellent blog, I come to learn that when this decidedly “cursed” race, The Dubai Gold Cup, was run again, two more horses were injured, one of them fatally. What is going on?????????????? If horse racing is to continue–should it?–it must be completely overhauled so that the safety of the horses–who have no say in the matter of whether or not they wish to race–becomes paramount.

    Thank you for your blog. It’s EXCELLENT, and I’ll follow your posts.


  3. I guess we will see soon just how much the racing industry cares about the animals that they use up and throw away. So much has to do with the breeding and the early age they start to run. If the racing industry is going to survive they had better figure out what is causing these deaths or they will be out of business. I hope!


  4. This number of breakdowns at one race and of the stature of the Dubai Gold Cup tells us that the issues with racing go far deeper than just American racing. This simply does not happen. If this does not end, racing is done. Racing has the appearance of complete corruption and total incompetence.

    If racing has to undergo a complete transformation in order to be acceptable to civilized fans, then it does. We need to be sure that no matter what racing says, it is verified by an outside agency and international.

    Also, whatever happens to racing, slaughter has to end and be prevented for Thorobreds no matter what. If these tracks all closed tomorrow, those horse would end up dead in a short period of time at kill plants. A few big names are all that matter in racing and we hear about them constantly. So what?

    The horsemen are gone from racing and the rest are left to talk about themselves all day in media. No one cares. The Thorobred is the reason fans care and racing is killing them for fast cash. It is disgusting and irresponsible.

    I am a former fan and I will refuse to support any racing until I see a total change in everything they do. A lot of experienced fans will feel the same way and stay away from the “sport of kings”. The horses are the athletes we go to see and they matter. Those in racing and outside of racing know that. We used to go to see the Thorobred show his magificent ability. What incredible horses they are. They were heros to many of us as kids.

    Workers need to be treated like human beings and at some tracks, they are not. The entire spectacle is unacceptable. I am tired of the excuses and endless calls for reforms which never happen. It is time for those who pay racing for its idea of “entertainment” to demand ethical behavior.

    Can you imagine being at the Gold Cup and having to watch that horrific travesty? I would have walked out.


    1. It was horrific. And seemed particularly so because they happened so close together. However, I couldn’t help thinking about those 21 horses who died at Aqueduct. Perhaps if they had all died on the same day, or the same week, people would have cried foul and shut the course down. But it went on over a period of months. Just like the 700 to 800 (that we know about) that die every year racing. The ones who die in training–we’ll never know how many 100s that has been and that is the way racing likes it.


      1. Dear Vivian you are so right n, but on the other side which also must be considered, How many of those tragedies could have been avoided with the proper care of the horse before the race and what about the track, is it properly maintained so many things that add up to tragedy………………………..All need to be addressed immediately…………


  5. Omg !!!! what the heck is going on there !!! There must be better checking to see if a horse is sound before Racing , seems to me there had to be a hair line crack that will show up upon xray !!! Accidents do happen but many can be deter d by a simple xray ……………………..I am saddened by this and all breakdowns of any horse !!! on any track that has not been properly attended to before each race !!! These issues for safety must be addressed !!!!


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