CDI purchases 1,250 historical racing machines

Carved racehorses.

THE PAULICK REPORT via writes: Churchill Downs Incorporated (“CDI” or the “Company”) (Nasdaq: CHDN) announced Monday that it has entered into an agreement to purchase 1,250 historical racing machines (“HRMs”) from International Game Technology PLC (“IGT”).

The newly engineered IGT product will operate on Ainsworth Game Technology’s (“Ainsworth”) proprietary HRM system that was co-developed with CDI. These HRMs will feature many player-favorite themes on some of IGT’s highest performing hardware including the CrystalDual® 27, CrystalSlant™ and CrystalCurve™ cabinets and will leverage some of the most recognizable themes in the gaming industry such as Fortune Coin™, Griffin’s Throne™ and Stinkin’ Rich®.

HRMs are approved by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and utilize the results of previously run live horse races to generate player outcomes. Continue reading »

Yes, let’s giving gamblers something other than live horse racing to keep them happy which in turn keep racehorses from being bred, wagered on and killed for their entertainment. This is the future. CDI are paving the way not in anyone’s interest but their own and generating mega profits — and the heartbeat of the entire horse racing industry — but we say hurrah if it takes racehorses out of the loop along the way.

Horse racing and the disposal of the dead

Burning votive candle against dark background.

— Bridget Moloney

Last October a West Virginia woman was stunned at what she saw at a landfill: The stiff body of a dead racehorse who had been dumped there.

The woman took photos of what she saw at the Brooke County Landfill in Colliers, W.Va. and then called nearby Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort to ask if the horse came from there.

Jim Colvin, Mountaineer’s manager of racing operations, confirmed the horse probably came from his track. He said this is the track’s normal procedure for handling dead horses and they have a standing arrangement with that landfill to accept those that die at the track.

So this was not a one-off incident.

He added that the Mountaineer-based chapter of the Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association, a trainers’ organization, “knows about it because they pay half.”

The remains of Bridget Moloney were dumped after the horse pulled up in a race in September 2019 at Mountaineer in W. Virginia.
The remains of Bridget Moloney were dumped after the horse pulled up in the second race at Mountaineer in W.Va., and “vanned off” Sept. 25, 2019. A passerby photographed her remains Sept. 27, 2019 and later turned them over to PeTA.

The horse was Bridget Moloney, an 8-year-old mare who was vanned off after the second race of the day, September 25, 2019, and euthanized.

When horses are euthanized, “that’s where we take the horses to,” Colvin said. “The majority of them. Some are taken back with the owners, if they have an attachment.” It appears that her owner Vickie Stewart had no such attachment.

In the meantime the West Virginia Racing Commission told Blood Horse that they “were investigating the suspicious disposal of an apparent euthanized racehorse, saying that transporting the deceased horse to the landfill did not follow track protocol.”

Although there are no official protocols on carcass disposal of euthanized horses, “the racing commission desires that all equine athletes that compete on our racetracks whose racing lives have come to an end are treated in a dignified and humane manner”, the WVRC said in a statement sent by its executive director, Joe Moore.

Bridget Moloney was “under the whip” (or raced) 73 times over a period of six years. She made her racing debut October 24, 2013. If this is not horse abuse, we do not know what is.

The Jockey Club wrote a stern letter to Mountaineer Park and the West Virginia Racing Commission stating:

“When a racehorse suffers catastrophic injury and loss of life, it is a tragedy. Our dismay is compounded by the disposal of this racehorse’s remains in a most callous manner. The photos we have seen show her body lying among a field of trash, evidencing a total disregard for the solemnity this kind of situation demands. Racehorses should always be treated with dignity and respect, and this extends to how their remains are handled after their passing.”

The letter also revealed the motivation behind it, which was naturally made public:

“As you know well, the sport of horse racing is (rightly) under the microscope concerning the treatment of our equine athletes.” The letter continues. “This incident only serves to heighten the public’s sensitivity to these issues and gives further ammunition to those who wish to see this sport’s ultimate demise.” That would be us.

In the meantime, have you ever heard so much double talk in all your life? Unless you have been exposed to a politician.

Later on the Paulick Report, a horse racing betting site and industry apologist, relays the news that the W.Va. police “cleared Mountaineer in the landfill case.” The comments to the story do not disappoint. Some are exceptionally callous. There is little to no compassion for a horse who was run literally to death — a total of 73 times — and then unceremoniously dumped with the approval of her owner.

The West Virginia Racing Commission announced plans to begin a necropsy program in January 2020. We tried to confirm if they have done so, but to date they have not returned our calls. Sigh.

— Charge A Bunch and Carson Valley

Two horses who died in a head-on collision last summer while training at Del Mar Racetrack were processed into animal by-products instead of being taken to a UC Davis Animal Health and Safety Laboratory per protocol.

The unraced Charge A Bunch and Carson Valley who had 13 career starts earning a total of $16,440 for his connections were taken to a rendering plant near the El Sobrante Landfill in Corona where they were processed into products such as fertilizer and bone meal before their remains were sent to the landfill, the Los Angeles Times reported.

“I got a call first thing in the morning after the accident saying the horses never arrived,” Dr. Rick Arthur, equine medical director for the California Horse Racing Board, told the newspaper.

By statute it is the track’s responsibility to get the bodies to the testing laboratory. An investigation found that Stiles Animal Removal was at fault for the mistake.

“The owner of Stiles admitted that he forgot to inform the new driver of this requirement (to take the remains to the state lab),” according to a CHRB investigators report.

Well, what else are they going to say?

Kill racing not horses.

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Where are 3,000 horses going each year CPR asks NZ Thoroughbred racing

Racehorses take a turn on the grass in New Zealand

PRESS RELEASE | COALITION FOR THE PROTECTION OF RACEHORSES (27 May 2020) — The Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses (CPR) have compiled a report on the number of thoroughbred horses vanishing from New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) each year and the numbers are staggering. Read here.

In January 2020, NZTR issued a complaint against the Whanganui Chronicle after CPR estimates of approximately 2,500 horses dying each year were published by the media outlet. The article was promptly edited to remove the statistic and an investigation was launched by the New Zealand Media Council. More here.

Since this time CPR has done further research to find the number of horses unaccounted for by NZTR each year is greater than originally proposed.

“Over 11 years, from the 2007/2008 racing year to the 2017/18 racing year, our research indicates the number of horses unaccounted for each year has been anywhere between 2,459 (2007/08) to 4,165 (2008/09),” CPR Communications Director Kristin Leigh stated.

“Overall, the approximate number of New Zealand thoroughbred horses unaccounted for over the 11-year period is 35,105 — averaging 3,191 horses per year.”

“Similarly to Australia, the number of horses bred into the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing industry each year is the approximate number of horses who vanish from the industry each year without a trace,” Ms Leigh said.

CPR’s report has also found that there are many inconsistencies on statistics regarding the movement of horses between the various New Zealand reports and even larger inconsistencies between New Zealand reported statistics and those from other countries.

“We have had to use various industry resources to gather the data, often having to rely on international racing bodies, as NZTR is simply not providing consistent data. Where the data is provided, it often contradicts international bodies data or even their own,” stated Ms Leigh.

“On reviewing the data provided regarding the import and export of NZ thoroughbred horses by both NZTR and various international bodies, it is difficult to believe any of the racing authorities has sufficient knowledge as to where these horses are going at all,” Ms Leigh said.

Regarding the traceability of retired racing horses, the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing website states:

Individual thoroughbreds can be easily identified by their brands and microchips listed in the New Zealand Studbook. However, it is difficult for New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing to maintain reliable information on the location and ownership of horses that have been retired and re-homed with unlicensed owners, given unlicensed owners are not subject to NZTR regulatory oversight. Attaining ‘whole-of-life traceability’ for the New Zealand thoroughbred population is an objective which faces practical limitations.

“The average lifespan of a horse is 25-30 years. The average time a horse is used for racing is 3 years.”

“The average lifespan of a horse is 25-30 years. The average time a horse is used for racing is 3 years. It is simply unacceptable for the industry to wipe their hands of their responsibility to these individuals once they are no longer of use to them and is yet another example of how bringing living beings into the world for the sole purpose of making profits will in most cases lead to unethical outcomes once those profits can no longer be made,” Ms Leigh added.

Point 28 in the findings by the NZ Media Council reads “Statements of fact and opinion were advanced by the protest group. NZTR said the group was misinformed but the statements were not directly contested so it is not clear where the facts lie.”

“In light of our recent findings we welcome any further evidence that can possibly be provided to us on the numbers and whereabouts of these horses,” Ms Leigh said.

“Horse racing supporters must consider what the likely outcomes are for over 3,000 unwanted horses each year and assess whether they want to continue to support an industry that not only forces these horses into years of isolation, being pushed well beyond their limits and using implements such as whips, bits, spurs and tongue-ties, but also routinely discards the very horses their industry could not exist without,” Ms Leigh concluded.

A CPR petition calls the New Zealand government to redirect the recently announced racing industry bail out sum of $72.5 million.

CPR has also recently launched an online petition calling on the New Zealand government to redirect the recently announced racing industry bail out of $72.5 million to innovative, sustainable and cruelty-free industries. More here.


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Featured Image not filed with Press Release

Two Bob Baffert horses test positive for banned substances at Oaklawn

Thoroughbred racehorse cheater and doper, trainer Bob Baffert.

Question: Why is this serial cheater still in business?

The excellent Tim Sullivan at the Louisville Courier-Journal reports, May 26, 2020:

Two of trainer Bob Baffert’s horses tested positive for banned substances during the recent meet at Oaklawn Park in Arkansas, including one of his top 3-year-olds, a source with knowledge of the situation confirmed to The Courier Journal Tuesday.

Twice winner of thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown, Baffert* won both divisions of the May 2 Arkansas Derby with Charlatan and Nadal. Charlatan is the 5-1 favorite for the 2020 Kentucky Derby, according to, while Nadal is 9-1.

The source said one of the two had tested positive but was not certain which of the two. Baffert horses ran 15 races during the Oaklawn meet in Hot Springs, winning nine.

Messages left for Baffert and the Arkansas Racing Commission were not immediately returned Tuesday.

“The rules of the Arkansas Racing Commission mandate confidentiality concerning any investigation into an alleged rule violation until there is a written decision of the stewards,” Baffert said in a prepared statement. “I am extremely disappointed that, in this instance, the Commission has not followed its own rules on confidentiality.

“I am hoping for an expedited investigation and look forward to being able to speak soon about any written decision of the stewards, if and when it becomes necessary and I’m allowed to under the Commission’s confidentiality rules.”

An initial positive test is not enough to disqualify a horse. When notified of a drug overage, a horseman can choose to send a “split” sample to an approved lab for a second opinion. According to the Paulick Report, a spokesperson for the Arkansas Racing Commission confirmed that the commission is awaiting split sample tests on the May 2 card.  

Baffert won all three races he entered on that card, the two divisions of the Arkansas Derby and an allowance optional claiming race won by Gamine, a 3-year-old filly. 

Typically, tests of the second sample take two to three weeks to complete. The rescheduled Belmont Stakes, the first leg of this year’s Triple Crown, is to set for June 20.

©Louisville Courier-Journal

Related Reading

— “Charlatan, a Belmont Stakes Contender, Tests Positive for a Banned Substance“, Joe Drape, New York Times (May 26, 2020)

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Featured Image: Bob Baffert talks with the media before Justify took to the sloppy Pimlico surface. (Photo: Michael Clevenger/Courier Journal)

*We predict when all is said and done, Baffert’s Triple Crown “wins” will have an asterisk beside them in the record books as being highly questionable victories because of his legacy of cheating and doping horses. They should take the titles away from him altogether.