Full Sail Ahead and Colour Portrait Dead at Parx

Pro football is perhaps the most brutal of professional sports, with laid-out players a familiar Sunday scene. Yesterday, there were 14 NFL games, yet even with violent collisions too many to enumerate, not one athlete died. In fact, over its entire 93-year history, the NFL has lost but a single player during a game, he to a heart attack. (In 137 years, Major League Baseball also has just one death.) Horseracing, speciously referred to as a sport by its apologists, records, according to The New York Times, at least three deaths a day. It’s “at least” because the industry willfully attempts to hide the carnage. Occasionally, though, it happens in full view, so confirmation comes easy.


Yesterday afternoon at Parx in Pennsylvania, two equine “athletes” died within an hour of each other: In the 2nd race, 4-year-old Full Sail Ahead (pictured above) “broke down in her left front near stretch and was humanely euthanized,” and in the 4th, 3-year-old Colour Portrait “broke down just prior to reaching the furlong marker and was humanely euthanized.” Two more youngsters cut down while entertaining gamblers. A sport? Only to the ignorant.

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    • people who make statements like that without any knowledge of the sport, are ignorant as to the real inner workings of our beautiful sport. This debate will continue thru eternity, but please don’t make statements without the knowledge to back it up. I mean really, slicing a cow’s neck through an assembly line is not murder? I guarantee their life prior to their killing is not nearly as wonderful and these beautiful racehorses have.

      • Melissa, do I know you? Do you know me? If I’m not mistaken, I know nothing about you and you know nothing about me yet you call me ignorant. I do know the “real inner workings” of this so called “sport” which you describe as “beautiful”. I use the term “sport” loosely. I know about the drugging of horses that are expected to race with injuries. I know about horses breaking down on the track. I know about horses “snapping their legs off”. I know about horses arriving back at the barn that can barely walk and I do know that the underground slaughter pipeline is alive and well at tracks throughout the country. If fact, a friend of mine and I just took two horses off a low level track here in Ohio and one is probably damaged beyond repair by an industry that you describe as “beautiful”. You make ignorant statements without the knowledge to back them up so I guess I can comfortably call you ignorant as well as clueless. By the way, I got my first OTTB in 1963 and I am a vegetarian.

      • Melissa, and AGAIN (this gets really old), this site is Horseracing Wrongs…not “the disgusting and inhumane butchering of cows and pigs and chickens”. Yes, we know those atrocities take place as well and are mortified by them. But AGAIN, a racing supporter – in this case, you – would like to shine the spotlight of scrutiny elsewhere…you would like to keep the abuse of the horses in this GAMBLING industry in the dark. But you see, we are far from ignorant. Many of us who support Patrick’s work here have seen what takes place on the backside. I can only speak for myself here…I was on the backside for 6 months a year for nearly 10 years. I loaded onto my own trailer crippled horses for 6 months a year for nearly 10 years. I stood with countless used-up and discarded TB racehorses while they died a peaceful death by humane euthanasia…tragically, the only humane treatment they knew there entire life. Don’t dare to call me ignorant…because to this very day, we are asked to pick up the broken bodies from this so-called “sport”.
        Sports retire their athletes…you won’t see Tiger Woods golfing in the “minor leagues” or in a recreational league on joints so crippled he can barely walk…but that is EXACTLY what happens to the horses…the “athletes” of this “sport”. Bullshit…this gambling industry discards the horses like a casino tosses out a used deck of cards.
        Ignorant??….oh, we are as far from ignorant as you are from reality.

  1. Patrick, Thank you for remembering the lives of these horses, for naming their names and honoring their efforts. Horses are so loyal, willing, and compliant to the will of humans that they race to their own death. I don’t know how, or why. humanity feels the “need” to continue racing horses now that the truth of the “sport” has been brought to light.

  2. I would not know about the deaths of all these horses except for this site. I second the thank you to Patrick. And what a sad sight is that beautiful horse lying in the dirt just waiting to be put out of pain and misery. Maybe at the end of each year there should be an “obituary” list of all the deaths at the tracks with name and age of each horse. Some newspaper might be interested in publishing it. Perhaps the N.Y. Times. The public has no idea about this carnage.

  3. Patrick, I know that you think you are serving a noble purpose, however, it is articles like yours and the New York Times that will likely kill horse racing. The general public should be made aware of the positives of the industry. Without racing don’t you understand , these horses will not have a purpose!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thoroughbreds used to be preferred horse show mounts, but unfortunately, warm bloods imported from Europe are the rage, and have been for the past fifteen years or so. Luckily, there are organizations that have made it their business to promote all Thoroughbred horse shows! You really must come up with solutions, not just complaints! How many off the track Thoroughbreds have you adopted? MP

    • MP, you must be new to the site. My noble purpose, as it were, is to kill horseracing. I am not a reformer; there are no positives in this industry. As for what will become of the domesticated (exploited) horse, hopefully, after the ones living are sterilized, vanish from the planet. And that, MP, is my “solution.”

    • MP, surely you jest! What is their “purpose” now? Is it to entertain us? I can be entertained in many ways. I don’t need horseracing to entertain me. Are horses “objects” on which people gamble? Gamble on something else such as basketball or soccer. The racing industry tolerates a culture of drugging horses, racing them with injuries, crippling them, and then sometimes handing them off for slaughter. If you are proud to be part of that culture, then knock yourself out. I am personally sick and tired of picking up the broken bodies. How many broken bodies have you picked up, MP? I have picked up too many to count.

    • Patrick writes exactly what needs to be said. Thank Goodness. I won’t even begin to
      go into details here and now, on when I participated in horse racing industry and was told countless times by other owners and trainers to give mine away. Ha, fat chance of that!
      Although I did try a lease once, but it went very wrong, so never again. MP perhaps you need a reminder the name here is Horseracing Wrongs. And yeah, there really is a lot wrong.

  4. MP, we can only hope that horse racing dies and dies soon. Because as you can see, while it continues, the HORSES are dying. Horse racing is a gambling industry that exploits the horse from the moment he/she is forced to participate, throughout the unnatural and stressful life racehorses endure, to the time he/she limps off the track for the last time….if the horse doesn’t die in the dirt or back at the barn. Then, unless the horse is one of the lucky ones to be taken in by an overcrowded rescue, it endures the trip to the slaughterhouse where he or she will be butchered. So yes, please, let racing die and die quickly.

    Question for you, though MP…since you asked of Patrick what we so often get from racing apologists…why is it expected of us – those who abhor racing and what it does to the unconsenting horses – to take in the horses that racing destroys?…shouldn’t that be up to racing supporters? I don’t expect you to take MY horses that no longer carry me on trail rides, or my old horses that simply live amongst their pasture buddies…so why always the question “How many horses off the track have you taken?” BTW, I’ve taken three and given them a forever home…and have loaded countless more on the backside, to bring them to safety…often only for them to be humanely euthanized. How about you?

  5. Full Sail Ahead and Colour Portrait, your premature and unnecessary deaths are mourned, and you will not be forgotten.

  6. I adore thoroughbreds, and have ridden many fine horses that were simply too slow to race. You do more harm than good to these horses you jackass! They are bred to race and unfortunately the horses fate lies in the hands of the owner and trainers, many are fine people, as in most walks of life there are always bad seeds. My horses are treated very well. MP

    • Again, MP, this site isn’t here to discuss how wonderful your horses are treated and how you adore TB’s. This site is here to shine a light on the atrocities that are committed in racing on a daily basis. I hope that I have made myself clear because you seem to be struggling with the intent and purpose of these posts.

  7. MP, how about you come out from behind “MP”, share your name (as we have) and your horses’ names? Since you treat them so well, give us the opportunity to witness a racing breeder/owner/trainer that DOES put the welfare of their horses first. And in saying that, we can assume your horses are not stalled 23 hours a day, they don’t receive a multitude of drugs, they don’t have their joints injected with corticosteroids, they don’t run with injuries, they don’t run in claiming races where you would take the chance that they would fall into the hands of what YOU called a “bad seed”…I’ll just stop there. And then when they are done racing, fully healthy and sound, you retire them to your farm (since responsible owners DO that for their horses) or YOU find them a safe, forever home that YOU have checked into, including communicating with reliable and professional references, and finally you have a contract that for any reason at all, YOUR horse comes back to YOU….you don’t just dump them into an overcrowded and underfunded rescue…or worse yet, drop them off at an auction or send them directly to a kill buyer. I don’t expect others to take my horses when they become infirmed, old, or as in your industry, merely too slow…so why should you expect others to take on the responsibility of YOUR horses when they no longer are “useful” to you?

    We look forward to your name and following your horses.

    • Joy, glad you asked “MP” to identify herself/himself but don’t hold your breath. MP takes up for a sinister and corrupt industry based on gambling. That tells you a lot about this individual who “adores” TB’s.

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