After the Del Mar summer of failed hearts, snapped bones, and pentobarbital injections, California racing could ill afford more bad press. Alas… Over the weekend in Stockton, three were killed in the final two days of the San Joaquin County Fair:
Saturday, 3-year-old Showmewhatyougot broke down after finishing 2nd in the 6th. On Sunday, 3-year-old Get Your Praise On and 4-year-old Secret Memo snapped legs in back-to-back races.
Larry Swartzlander, chief operating officer of the California Authority of Racing Fairs (The Record): “If you want to look for excuses, it’s too much strain and something’s got to give. These horses have been racing all summer and some of them may have been put out there when they probably shouldn’t have.” (The Bruce Dillenbeck-trained Get Your Praise On was being raced for the third time in three weeks.)
The Record summed it up thus: “Racing officials, jockeys and racing fans were left shaking their heads and heartbroken once again, with widespread comments of ‘not again’ and ‘that’s unbelievable’ heard among the estimated crowd of 2,000.” Well, to all those “left shaking their heads and heartbroken,” we say, cease and desist.
Cease and desist.