Governor’s office says Santa Anita can continue racing during coronavirus pandemic

Remember when Governor Newsom was all for closing down Santa Anita? Newsom has backtracked quite a bit, but nothing like he is doing now. Let us not trick ourselves into believing it’s all about racetrack personnel. Where was his concern then?

In an article dated March 20, 2020, entitled “Governor’s office says Santa Anita can continue racing during coronavirus pandemic,” Art Wilson, reporting for The San Gabriel Tribune writes:

Santa Anita was able to carry on with the winter portion of its winter/spring meet Friday after receiving the OK to race from Gov. Newsom’s office.

Newsom issued a stay at home order to Californians on Thursday “until further notice.” Residents are not allowed to leave home except for essential purposes like groceries, prescriptions and health care as well as commuting to jobs deemed essential.

Late Thursday, Santa Anita officials said in a press release they were in touch with Newsom’s office for clarity and expected to hear back Friday morning.

“Having consulted with our governmental and industry partners, horses at Santa Anita and Golden Gate are continuing to exercise and race,” Santa Anita said in a statement issued early Friday afternoon. “Racehorses are living, breathing animals that require constant supervision and care – from feeding to exercise, to veterinary care.”


Yes, racehorses “require constant supervision and care — from feeding to exercise, to veterinary care” but they do not need to race. What a farce. It is all about money, especially gambling revenues. Who are they trying to kid? This kind of deceitful posturing is why millions no longer trust horse racing and are walking away from it in droves. It is not doing the Governor Newsom’s reputation any good either.


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FEATURED IMAGE: ASSOCIATED PRESS

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.

Why we call for an end to U.S. horse racing

Racehorse in red hood. The Horse magazine online.

We call for an end to U.S. horse racing because it is past reforming. The horse has bolted.

Additionally, there appears to be no one in American horse racing genuinely interested in, or knowledgeable and capable of, reforming it. If we are wrong then show us who they are, what they purport to do and when they are going to start doing it.

In the meantime horse racing apologists, please do not trot out that piece of feeble legislation, The Horse Racing Integrity Act, as an example. It will not remedy the problems it is chiefly designed for in the long term. Once the drug authority comes in and sets it all up, it puts U.S. horse racing back in charge. The Horse Racing Integrity Act is a fox guarding the henhouse piece of legislation. It is a smoke and mirrors tactic designed to give the appearance of reform.

Then there is the breeding aspect of horse racing where all of this really begins.

Modern American racehorses are bred to breakdown, and as a result are constantly breaking down. They will continue to do so until the American racehorse has been bred to restore balance and durability. Trying to get and keep racehorses on the racecourse the way they are bred now is the major contributing factor for the drugging, doping and debilitating “therapies” practiced on them.

How about the tens of thousands of racehorses who are sent to a grisly and terrifying death by slaughter. What about them? And what about the persistent rumors of horse racing employed lobbyists buying off politicians in Washington DC to keep the SAFE Act banning horse slaughter from passing.

How does American horse racing stay in business? Gambling, baby, gambling. Oh, and let’s not forget those tasty millions of State governmental subsidies. Your tax dollars at work.

We conclude with this. The only way to protect racehorses from the cruel and fatal practices of American horse racing is to end horse racing. What else is there?

We didn’t invite ourselves to this day. Horse racing has brought us here.
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“The horse has bolted” is an English expression which means someone trying to prevent something from happening, but have done so too late to prevent damage from being done.

Horse Race Insider’s Note to Racing: No More Mixed Messages

We note a few quotes and write in response to a Horse Race Insider’s article, “Note to Racing: No More Mixed Messages.”

Quote: “Aside from seeing an occasional news broadcast, the public has little to no interest in the game.”

We Say: Because horse racing has little to no interest in the public. This is an insider’s game. Plus — and this may ultimately be the defining factor particularly in the current climate — the public do not want to watch racehorses being killed.

Quote: “None of the people that have signed on to support the HIA [Horseracing Integrity Act] race their stock without drugs, even though they openly oppose it. They do not want to lose the edge from supposedly non performance-enhancing medications. That in itself negates the claim that drugs regularly administered to racehorses are benign.”

We Say: Yes. Correct.

Quote: “It is easy to look good backing a bill with no chance of becoming law.”

We Say: Spot on.

QUOTE: “TJC’s [The Jockey Club] support of DOA [dead on arrival] HIA bill, and not the Racehorse Doping Ban Act of 2019, aka Udall-Wyden, or the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act 2019, makes it seem as if the stewards of racing are moving forward to improve the reputation and integrity of the sport, but not supporting Udall-Wyden and SAFE clearly shows it is a publicity ploy.

“HIA not only lacks the necessary support, it faces the opposition of the National Horseman’s Benevolent and Protective Association and Kentucky’s Senator Mitch McConnell, who acts on the wishes of Churchill Downs, and has no mechanism to fund itself.

“Supporting a bill that has no chance to become law is the perfect ploy to placate the public and the perceived enemy, animal rights groups.

“HIA not only places the same ineffectual industry leaders in a majority position on a board with government backing, it sets up the United States Anti-Doping Authority for a fall.

“Udall-Wyden and SAFE, which would both be beneficial to the sport are absent of TJC support. SAFE in particular because it outlaws horse slaughter in the US and prohibits the export of horses for slaughter in other countries.”

We Say: Exactly.

Here is where we part company with the Horse Race Insider article.

QUOTE: “Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) causes death by blows to the head, yet the National Football League and the National Hockey league are not even remotely worried that society or politicians will banish Football or Ice Hockey.

“Thoroughbred horse racing’s leaders need to wake up to the fact that the industry isn’t an endangered species and get back to competing with sports betting, which is likely to have a much greater negative effect in the industry than horse deaths.

“In one year, the narrative has changed from how to grow the sport to how to save it. The issues of growth have not changed, nor has the chance horse racing will be banished.

“The time has come to take the reins and drive the sport into the future, not shrink from the actions of animal rights activists.”

We Say: The quote in the article that breaks the bank is this, “Thoroughbred horseracing’s leaders need to wake up to the fact that the industry isn’t an endangered species and get back to competing with sports betting, which is likely to have a much greater negative effect in the industry than horse deaths.” More than horse deaths? How do you think horse racing got into its current jam then?

As regards the horses, racehorses aren’t recruited. They don’t sign multi million contracts to train and compete. Neither do they volunteer their services. They are purposely bred, created, not for themselves — but to be hideously used and disposed of by a cruel industry whose concern for their welfare has become virtually non existent. 

Please folks whatever you do, do not try to respond with comments about how much owners and trainers “love” their horses. If so, then their love is the kiss of death. Added to that, they wouldn’t be in this business at all if they gave a flying you know what about the racehorse.

As a sidenote, we are not picking on Horse Race Insider here. We are simply using its article as an example of how a majority, if not all, of horse racing thinks.

As you can see, many in horse racing are still making piously bankrupt remarks about reform, and turning around and contradicting themselves just a few days later. It’s bedlam trying to follow it all. Horse Race Insider just happened to gift us with what we needed all in one place, that’s all.

What it appears in actuality is all that American horse racing truly wants is for the bad publicity, outside interference, proposed federal oversight, anti-doping legislation, suggestions of an independent Commissioner — and oh, yes, those annoying day-to-day racetrack death watches and protests — to go far, far away so they can go back to what they do undisturbed and unperturbed. Who can blame them — if you are of that ilk.

However, that means the continued drugging, abuse and killing of racehorses. Why would anyone who enjoys a flutter want to gamble on such a thing? How can the rest of us turn a blind eye?
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