Horse Racing Wrongs: Last week’s broken, bleeding and dead

Barbaro after he suffered the fatal breaks that eventually claimed his life. The carnage and suffering continues throughout thoroughbred and quarter horse racing. Image Source: Bryant Photos.
Barbaro after he suffered the fatal breaks that eventually claimed his life. The carnage and suffering continues throughout thoroughbred and quarter horse racing. Image Source: Bryant Photos.

Patrick Buttello reports and protests the mayhem and deaths associated with U.S. horse racing on a continual basis. Here is a sample of his work. Lest we forget. There is much more on his website.

Last week in U.S. Thoroughbred and QuarterHorse Racing (Equibase)

Compiled by Patrick Buttello at HorseRacingWrongs »

You Know Too “was pulled up in distress…vanned off” at Delaware
Blame Logan “vanned off” at Louisiana
Obscene Britches “took a bad step” at Mountaineer – subsequently confirmed dead
Miss Q Who “vanned off” at Zia
Afleet Destiny “fell, DNF” at Parx
No Sham Here “vanned off” at Zia
Super Mama “bled” at Belmont
Benny Special “vanned home” at Indiana
Cheray “vanned home” at Indiana
Kieran Street “fell, DNF” at Finger Lakes – subsequently confirmed dead
Swiss Alps “vanned off” at Gulfstream
Avro “vanned off in severe distress” at Belterra
Coach’s Dream “vanned off” at Churchill
Meadow Storm “vanned off” at Penn
Scottsgold “vanned off” at Penn
Tollie Rossel “bled during the race” at Prairie
Ta Ta Nomoro “fell suddenly, van off” at Remington
Windy Cape “in distress, vanned off” at Belterra – subsequently confirmed dead
Martha Rose “in distress, vanned off” at Belterra – subsequently confirmed dead
Category Two “pulled up in distress…euthanized” at Charles Town
Jess Doit “vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Linnaeus “bled from the nostrils and mouth” at Remington
Appoggiatura “fell over the last fence” at Shawan
Moss Code “collided with fallen horse [above] and brought down” at Shawan
Dee Favorite Girl “bled, vanned off” at Zia
Approximator “vanned off” at Belterra
Fly B “vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Jess Wong “vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Abets Abet “returned bleeding from both nostrils” at Parx
Jessaspecial “bled” at Prairie

#  #  #

DNF=Did Not Finish (complete the race)

Locomotives sitting atop toothpicks

We leave you with this quote.

THOROUGHBRED RACEHORSES

“Our horses are sick. Our thoroughbreds are thoroughly inbred. They are locomotives sitting atop toothpicks. They are fragile and friable, designed to run but not to recover from running. And each time they break down or wear out, we chalk it up to an individual horse’s shortcomings, rather than the decades-long decline of the entire breeding industry”.

— Barry Petchesky (Deadspin)

Quote from “Our Racehorses are Broken America »

Read more at Horse Fund’s Horse Racing Reports »

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Eight Belles — racing 10 years on

Horse in profile silhouetted against a night sky. Unattributed Google search image.

by JANE ALLIN

The Kentucky Derby this Saturday marks the tenth anniversary of the catastrophic breakdown of Eight Belles. Racing with the boys, she crossed the wire 4 ¾ lengths behind Big Brown, finishing second – the first filly since 1999 to run in the Derby — only to collapse with two shattered ankles and be euthanized on the track.

Memories of Barbaro’s anguishing ordeal, fresh in the minds of racing fans and the death of another horse on Kentucky Oaks day, cast a pall over North America’s most celebrated racing event and raised questions about the safety of horse racing.

Immediately the racing industry responded with the notion that more uniform regulations regarding equine health standards and drug use should be a top priority.

Ten long years and what has improved? Nothing.

Year after year, the industry holds conference after conference claiming that they are moving towards improved safety standards. Sadly, the efforts of the few that do care and want change, are lost to the greed of the rest.

These innocent souls are sacrificed to casino profits, allowance races, graded and graded stakes races and when they fail, relegated to claiming races and the slaughterhouse. It is estimated that 20% of slaughtered horses in North America are thoroughbreds — some picked up by the meat man at the track and sold by unscrupulous trainers and owners after a bad race, without a hope of finding a home. Disposed as garbage. Just throw-away items.

In fact, it seems the opposite to what the racing industry claims has happened.

The transparency, if there ever was any, is gone.

The doping continues, the trainers and veterinarians are one step ahead of the newest drug testing, the records available about trainer infractions are incomplete where serious penalties are hidden from the public, statistics only report deaths if a horse dies during a race, and horses, despite what the industry claims, continue to die in record numbers, all hidden from the public’s view.

All of this is a cover up, blatant lies, to attempt to convince everyone that the industry is above board.

Horse racing is a cruel, predatory business. You bet, they die.


QUOTES

Eight Belles

“She ran with the heart of a locomotive, on champagne-glass ankles.” Blaming the breeders and investors, sports writer Sally Jenkins claimed,”thoroughbred racing is in a moral crisis, and everyone now knows it.”

Thoroughbred Racehorses

“Our horses are sick. Our thoroughbreds are thoroughly inbred. They are locomotives sitting atop toothpicks. They are fragile and friable, designed to run but not to recover from running. And each time they break down or wear out, we chalk it up to an individual horse’s shortcomings, rather than the decades-long decline of the entire breeding industry”.  — Barry Petchesky (Deadspin)

Insightful Perspective

“What he liked about horse racing was the minimal investment and the high returns. He didn’t mind horses at all; they were easy on the eyes and exciting to watch.”

“The horse industry in general was a zero-waste proposition: this was one animal you could take from birth, exploit all its qualities – speed, strength, tractability – through breeding, racing, eventing, caléche or companion service, and then profit from its flesh when it had outlived its usefulness.”

From the Book, GROUND MANNERS, A NOVEL, by Cynthia D’Errico »

Related Reading

More by Jane Allin including the groundbreaking The Chemical Horse »

Racehorse Memorial Wall Worldwide, began 2005 »

Horse Racing Wrongs, began 2014 »

©The Horse Fund

How one snapped, dangling leg changed a heart forever

Horse in profile silhouetted against a night sky. Unattributed Google search image.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Horse Racing) — It’s Derby Day, Louisville’s biggest event of the year, even bigger than Christmas and most likely generates more revenue than that blessed event ever will.

There is nothing blessed about horse racing, especially the drug and death riddled variety put on in the USofA.

An example of whereof we speak was published yesterday by Horse Racing Wrongs by Patrick Battuello who catalogs the day to day death and disarray that is horse racing American style.

Here’s an excerpt or go there now.

As the horses were crossing the finish line, I noticed one stopped very abruptly and the little man on his back fell off onto the ground. The horse that had stopped was Mariano. As the other horses passed him, it became clear to me what the issue was. One of his front legs had completely snapped in half and was now dangling, held on by nothing more than the horse’s thin skin. I looked around and there were a few startled faces, but the vast majority just looked the other way or simply said to me “that’s just part of horse racing… it happens.” I knew right away that Mariano would be killed shortly after breaking his leg and that the races would continue on as if nothing happened. So I left, never to return.

There was something off about him breaking his leg. He didn’t trip. He didn’t fall. He didn’t run into any other horses. I know because I was standing RIGHT there. He was just a few feet away from me. He was just running. And then he wasn’t anymore.

Read the full story »

U.S. horse racing earlier this year patted itself on the back saying that fatalities were down again for another year.

We could be wrong but we suspect they are cooking the books or racetracks are under reporting, or possibly both. Reporting is purely voluntary and some breakdowns and deaths are not reported, so the public never has any true idea of what goes on. That’s how they like it. That’s how they want it. That’s how it’s going to be.

This is typical of a deadly, destructive industry living in a world according to its own order. Who is to hold them accountable. Horse racing has no Commissioner like other “sports”.  No one in particular is “in charge”. Millions and millions are bet on it. Don’t you find this odd?

Racehorses are the innocent victims of this ongoing barbarity. Will they ever be free? When will it all end?

READ MORE

If you think we are exaggerating, check out “10 Dark Secrets From the World of Horse Racing” from Listverse.com.

QUOTE

We leave you with this quote by Barry Petchesky, “Our Racehorses are broken America”, Deadspin.

“Our horses are sick. Our thoroughbreds are thoroughly inbred. They are locomotives sitting atop toothpicks. They are fragile and friable, designed to run but not to recover from running. And each time they break down or wear out, we chalk it up to an individual horse’s shortcomings, rather than the decades-long decline of the entire breeding industry”.

—-

FEATURED IMAGE
Horse in profile silhouetted against a night sky. Unattributed Google search image.

 

Barbaro died 10 years ago today. What’s changed?

Barbaro breaks down in the Preakness at Plimico.
Source: Bryant Photos.

Barbaro died 10 years ago today.

Barbaro’s public breakdown, numerous treatments and eventual death should have galvanized horse racing to deal with its equine athletes in a more ethical and compassionate manner.

What’s changed? Nothing. As a matter of fact, racehorse breakdowns and deaths are arguably worse.

Cheating and drugging, fueled by greed and ego, are as rampant as ever.

Racehorses are breaking down and dying at every level, in training and on the racecourse. A particular gut wrenching trend is the destruction of young horses who are being killed at an all time high at the tender age of two.

Don’t take our word for it.

You can follow the trail of injury and death at the Horse Racing Wrongs website compiled by Patrick Battuello.

New York alone killed 119 rachorses in 2016. And those are the recorded ones. Always bear in mind that the reporting of racehorse deaths is not demanded by any racing authority. It is purely voluntary.

Barbaro Timeline

Oct. 4, 2005 – He wins his first race at Delaware Park. Barbaro went on to win four additional racing contests prior to being entered into the Kentucky Derby.

May 6, 2006 – Barbaro wins the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs by 61/2 lengths, becoming a favorite to win the Triple Crown.

May 20, 2006 – A freak accident at the Preakness Stakes, held at Pimlico Raceway near Baltimore, results in the severe fracturing of Barbaro’s right-hind leg into 23 pieces, bringing on a life-threatening condition.

May 21, 2006 – Barbaro undergoes surgery at the University of Pennsylvania’s New Bolton Center in East Marlborough. During the operation Dr. Dean Richardson, the chief surgeon, implants metal plates with 23 screws into the horse’s badly fractured leg with the aim of stabilizing it. Following surgery, Barbaro was lowered into a specialized, heated water tank with a sling. The tank, complete with a rubber raft, allowed the animal to come out of sedation without reinjuring the leg. Following surgery, Barbaro is given a 50-50 chance of survival.

July 13, 2006 – Barbaro develops a case of severe laminitis in his left-hind hoof, resulting from the horse’s having shifted his weight to that leg during recovery from surgery. The horse’s laminitic leg is placed into a special boot and Barbaro is given painkillers. During a procedure, called a hoof-wall resection, 80 percent of Barbaro’s left-rear hoof is removed.

Aug. 2, 2006 – Richardson announces that the fractured leg has fused to the point where the cast on the right-rear leg would have been replaced, had the left-rear leg not become injured. He says signs are encouraging.

Aug. 15, 2006 – Barbaro is reported to have gone outside to graze for the first time since the accident.

Aug. 17, 2006 – Richardson announces Barbaro is supporting his own weight and use of the support sling has been discontinued.

Aug. 18, 2006 – Radiographs show that Barbaro’s fractured leg has completely fused.

Sept. 26, 2006 – It is announced that Barbaro’s cast would not be replaced as long as he was comfortable in it and the left-rear hoof had regrown by 18 millimeters and the support shoe had been replaced with a bandage. Richardson says, at this point, the hoof still needed to grow three times that length, which he estimated could take six months.

Oct. 10, 2006 – Richardson says Barbaro’s cast and protective shoe were changed and that the injured hoof is showing recovery from laminitis.

Nov. 6, 2006 – Six months after his Kentucky Derby victory, Barbaro’s cast is permanently removed and replaced with a splinted bandage. No new problems are reported with Barbaro’s injured hoof.

Dec. 12, 2006 – The splinted bandage on Barbaro’s right-hind leg is removed.

Jan. 3, 2007 – A cast is placed on Barbaro’s laminitic left-hind leg.

Jan. 10, 2007 – Richardson announces another section of Barbaro’s left-hind hoof has been removed.

Jan. 27, 2007 – Barbaro undergoes additional surgery to insert two additional steel pins into the healed bones of his right-hind leg that theoretically would allow the horse to bear more weight. The procedure involved the risk of refracturing Barbaro’s leg.

Jan. 29, 2007 – Barbaro is euthanized at the request of owners Roy and Gretchen Jackson of West Grove.