Serious Becomes Del Mar’s 12th Victim

4-year-old Serious, who broke down (“on her own”) in the 7th race at Del Mar on July 31st, was (finally) euthanized yesterday (Steve Andersen, DRF). At the time of her break, you might remember, the state vet supposedly recommended death, but the owners – Diana Lopez, Raul Sosa – opted to extend her suffering by two weeks. For this “cool as ever” track, 12 dead athletes and counting:

4-year-old Corlett Drive, July 13, training
4-year-old Kokaltash, July 17, race 5
2-year-old Mont Saint Michel, July 24th, found dead in stall
3-year-old Dance With Fate, July 24, training
4-year-old Yes She’s Unusual, July 25, race 6
5-year-old Longview Drive, July 25, race 7
5-year-old Lil Swiss Echo, July 26, race 5
3-year-old J Kat, July 26, race 9
2-year-old Chilled Mousse, July 27, training
3-year-old Chattering Gambler, August 2, race 3
3-year-old Steppingood, August 13, race 8
4-year-old Serious, August 14, from July 31 race 7

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  1. Disgraceful. When will they clean up the people in the industry who reflect badly on everyone. When will the governing bodies wake up and recognise that these animals are dying unnecessarily.?

  2. I agree with Nicole. If it could be cleaned up, don’t you think it would have happened by now?

  3. You know- I am also horrified at what’s going on in places like Del Mar, and in the crass commercialism that killed poly track. I don’t even dispute that a sport that is run like this might not be better off shut down. It makes me sad though, to think of the carnage should it happen. Obviously it would cut down on horse deaths over the long run- after we stop breeding throughbreds. But what do you suppose would happen to all of the suddenly worthless thoroughbreds that are currently alive. The vast majority of racing and breeding throughbreds would promptly become horse burgers shipped to Europe and other horse eating countries.

    We already have a glut of horses with plenty of healthy horses going off to be slaughtered in Mexico and Canada. There is no place for all of these ex racehorses. For every one that would be saved another horse that is not a thoroughbred would go to slaughter. Zero sum game- and mind numbing, nauseating carnage of beautiful horses. I don’t know what the solution is, but immediately outlawing horse racing would kill thousands of horses right now.

  4. I can think of some radical decisions that can be adopted. Cut out all drugs while racing and training, drugs only to be used during healing/sickness/lame etc. No drugs to mask injuries while racing. Breeding should be “controlled” by permits for so many foals per year. (We have licensed hunting season for deer and there are only so many doe permits allowed to keep the herds manageable.) No two year old races. Start racing at 3 years, Triple Crown 4 years old. If you want to play you have to play fair. Self policeing never works with people, they tend to get greedy, hungry for attention in the spotlight, and bragging rights.

    • These ideas are sure to work. Lets give out permits for breeding?? That is kind of like stopping Slaughter by shutting down slaughter houses. We see how well that worked. Horses now have longer rides and are taken across the borders to slaughter houses. So now lets out source the breeding as well. I am sure Mexico can mass produce horses for us. Do you any more ideas for taking jobs away from the American people?? How about firing all teachers and making our children learn on Skype?? I am sure some third world country can do the job cheaper…

      • The OBS August 26-28, lists 1,037 Thoroughbred yearlings for sale and that is just one of many annual sales including ” 2 year olds in training” and “mixed sales”.

        Using Thoroughbred slaughter statistics how many of the horses offered at this sale alone will wind up in kill pens ?

        Considering racing is on the wane, breeders should start to consider a change of occupation instead of continuing to overbreed, mainly to supply the slaughterhouses.

      • Another Country 2 I am not sure how you read my idea on giving breeding permits as out sourcing jobs. There was a time when there were quality Thoroughbred horses then it shifted to quantity. The more the better, was the way to go, no concern for the quality of the horse. Permits would grant permission to breed so many Thoroughbred horses a year here in the states. Breed quality again.

        Right now there are alot of foals left motherless everyday because of hormone medicine being made with a pregnant horse’s urine. The foals are taken away almost immediately. They too are taken to slaughter unless a rescue is made from a charity that has been notified foals are available. Which does not always happen.

        Something has to be done to correct the wrongs of horses dying on the track every day. It would take a few years to adjust but working every year through the adjustments would have to be a plus for the Thoroughbred horse. Besides who thought 10 years ago there would be “no smoking” areas in public buildings? Then no smoking at all in public buildings and even no smoking on company property at all, even in the parking lot in your own car? In Kentucky? The largest tobacco producing state? And now you rarely even see a tobacco patch in Kentucky. It took time but it happened.

        Unfortunately, we need to start with over breeding of Thoroughbred horses. No more flooding the market with Thoroughbreds.

  5. I know it is all about the $$. But only racing them when these horses have sufficiently matured would be a start.

  6. As Patrick pointed out in his piece about the 4 y/o filly Serious, she was horribly wounded in the race on July 31 and Del Mar’s vet recommended she be euthanized THAT DAY due to the severity of her injuries. But instead, her connections – trainer Vince Smith and owners Diana Lopez and Raul Sosa – wanted to “save her for broodmare DUTIES.” So they SHIPPED her to Smith’s barn at Los Al. There she lingered, undoubtedly suffering with the mortal wounds to her front legs, until she was finally put out of her misery. Catastrophic injuries…loaded onto a trailer and transported to another barn…killed after another 2 weeks of agony. All so the young filly could continue to SERVE. There are no words to describe the selfishness, greed, and total lack of compassion of Smith, Lopez, and Sosa. Absolutely sickening.

    RIP little Serious…your DUTIES are finally over.

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