Tap the Wire fatally injured while winning at Los Alamitos

LOS ALAMITOS (CNS) | May 24, 2020 — A racehorse who survived the devastating 2017 Lilac Fire that killed 46 horses at San Luis Rey Downs reportedly died from injuries he suffered while winning a race at the Los Alamitos Race Course earlier this month.

Tap the Wire, who scored $11,800 in prize money in a quarterhorse race on May 9 with jockey Mauro Donoe on his back, was euthanized, track announcer Michael Wrona confirmed late Saturday.

Video of the race shows Tap the Wire appearing to injure his right front leg a few yards before the finish line.Replying to a Twitter user who asked if Tap the Wire had been euthanized, Wrona tweeted “Unfortunately, he was.”

Tap the Wire is not listed on the California Horse Racing Board’s May report of fatalities at Los Alamitos.

“This horse shipped into Los Alamitos to race from the San Luis Rey Downs training center,” Mike Marten, public information officer for the CHRB, told City News Service. “After the race, this horse was shipped from Los Alamitos to a clinic near San Luis Rey Downs for treatment.”

At least 14 horses have died at the Cypress track in racing or training-related incidents during this race season, which began in late December. Read full report » See Equibase listing »

We say

Horse racing is running with on track personnel and jockeys present only. No spectators. Racing continues its grisly, deadly so called “sport” to give gamblers something to bet on and make money from it. Without gamblers racing would die instead of horses.

Kill racing not horses.


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Candlelight vigil held for NYC carriage horse Aisha

The New York City Police Department’s Animal Abuse Squad is investigating the recent death of a carriage horse in Central Park after a video of the fatal February 29th incident was made public online.

Posted by animal rights advocacy group NYCLASS, the video shows the 12-year old carriage horse — named Aisha — repeatedly falling, unable to use her back legs.

Disturbing footage

A separate video posted Sunday shows several people who appear to be trying to get the horse into a trailer, but the horse keeps collapsing. That tweet, also from NYCLASS, accuses the people near the horse of blowing smoke in Aisha’s face and brutalizing her.

Industry response

Christina Hansen, a spokeswoman for Historic Horse-Drawn Carriages of Central Park, which represents the city’s horse-drawn carriages, confirmed to CNN that the horse was euthanized Sunday evening, a day after the incident — which she called an “acute medical emergency.”

The horse showed sudden signs of distress Saturday afternoon after completing one ride. The vet and the emergency horse trailer were called immediately, Hansen said, before the horse’s condition deteriorated and it collapsed.

“Unfortunately, she was never able to stand, apparently due to cardiac insufficiency in her hind end, and her owner, in consultation with the vet, made the difficult but humane decision to put her to sleep,” Hansen said in the statement.

Advocates and other witnesses tell a different story, claiming the horse was recklessly tied up and shoved into the trailer instead of being checked-out by a vet at the scene.

Mayor disgusted

The video caught the attention of New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, who called the videos “painful” in a Sunday, March 1 tweet:

“We’ve made real progress in animal welfare but we must go further. The NYPD’s Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad is on the case and WILL get answers,” he wrote.

The mayor again tweeted about the situation Monday.

“Watching video of the dying carriage horse again, disgusted this is happening in our city,” he said. “Why are these poor animals still being forced to work on the streets of America’s largest city so a few humans can profit? This needs to end. When laws condone the inhumane, change them!”

NYPD Detective Annette Shelton told CNN, “The NYPD’s Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad is investigating this incident and we are awaiting the results of the necropsy.”

Vigil for Aisha

NYCLASS held a massive Candlelight Vigil Thursday, March 5 at 6pm, at 59th St near Fifth Avenue and Grand Army Plaza to mourn Aisha. There was a stirring musical performance dedicated to the fallen carriage horse with footage displayed on multiple TV screens showing her heartbreaking struggles.

Take Action

Let’s keep the momentum going on behalf of Aisha and other horses like her.

NYC RESIDENTS: Call your NYC Council Member to express your outrage over Aisha’s mistreatment and death, and urge them to support efforts to end this constant, intolerable carriage horse abuse. 

If you live outside of NYC, call Mayor Bill de Blasio at 212.788.3000 and politely urge him to continue working toward a complete end of carriage horse abuse — for good.


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The Chemical Horse, 2nd edition

I’ll Have Another was made a strong favorite to win the Belmont Stakes on Saturday.Credit...Al Bello/Getty Images

Jane Allin’s groundbreaking report on the doping of racehorses — “The Chemical Horse” — has been revised to update its citations.

Allin’s update coincides with the US House Subcommittee Hearing of the Horse Racing Integrity Act which would establish an anti-doping agency to oversee all horse racing (for an interim period anyway) to include Quarter Horse, Standardbred and Thoroughbred racing.

Out of that group Thoroughbred racing in particular has demonstrated it cannot and/or will not police itself. It has been given many decades to do so, leaving behind a trail of injuries, broken horses and death, during training and racing.

We believe it must, and ultimately will, come to an end because the gamblers who sustain it and make it all possible are leaving in droves. They will not be replaced. There is absolutely nothing appealing about horse racing to America’s up and coming generations.

View “The Chemical Horse”, 2nd. Ed. on the Fund for Horses website.

See the complete list of the Fund’s special Reports here.

Thank you for stopping by.


FEATURED IMAGE: I’ll Have Another before being scratched for the Belmont Stakes, abandoning his shot at the Triple Crown. Credit Al Bello/Getty Images.

Santa Anita Vets missed chances to remove Mongolian Groom

Mongolian Groom. Sports Illustrated image.

Notice the post’s title says missed chances — plural — referring to the lack of supervision and action leading to the death of Mongolian Groom at the 2019 Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita.

KTLA reports:

“A report on the death of Mongolian Groom in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita says veterinarians missed opportunities to remove the gelding from the $6 million race because of time constraints or deficiencies in the process used to evaluate horses.

In the 20-page report issued Wednesday, Dr. Larry Bramlage identified six suggested improvements aimed at refining safety and evaluation protocols for future events.

Mongolian Groom, a 4-year-old gelding, suffered what Cup officials described as ‘a serious fracture’ of his left hind leg in the late stages of the Classic last November, which was shown on national television. Four vets recommended that he be euthanized.”

Check out this statement by Bramlage:

“It is hard to fault a process that had a 99.6% accuracy rate,” Bramlage said, noting that of the 229 horses that competed in last year’s [2019] world championships, Mongolian Groom was the only one to be injured.

Wait a minute. Mongolian Groom was not simply injured; he was fatally injured. Who knows what horses went home lame?

Then there is this.

What about when Mongolian Groom was warming up on the track? Numerous people saw him and noticed he was favoring his left (or near) hind. What about Mongolian Groom’s jockey? How is it, as sensitive as jockeys are to their mounts, that he did not notice anything?

In our opinion, Mongolian Groom’s life may easily have been saved if someone, anyone, had given a damn about the safety of this horse. As it turns out, he is just another statistic . . . a fatal one.

Someone on a message board wrote, “. . . yeah, well, that’s real sad and everything but it’s better than going to slaughter, isn’t it?” *

This is horse racing.

Read Bramlage’s six points »

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*The referenced comment has now been deleted.