Zaikov, Perfect Danger Dead at Belmont

Two more horses have perished at Belmont Park, bringing that track’s 2014 Kill Total to 36: 4-year-old Zaikov, who hadn’t been raced since last December, went down – fractured humerus – while training yesterday morning. For trainer Todd Pletcher, that’s seven dead horses at NY tracks this year. The other horse, 4-year-old Perfect Danger, was felled by post-surgery laminitis. The Eugene Reiff-trained colt was last raced at Saratoga in August.

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  1. Isn’t that ironic? Broke down while training. Training is conditioning. This trainer is depleting by overusing or isn’t feeding the horses right or just doesn’t know what he is doing. Why are owners using him? That’s the question. After the first dead horse, he would be out and should be.

  2. And th other, Perfect Danger, just tragic to survive surgery and confinement only to be felled by bad man imposed fail. Let them out of the stalls. Let them be horses.

    • Yea okay, let a horse who had surgery out of the stall. Any horse who has had leg surgery will be subject to laminitis, if they are lucky laminitis wont develop. It is not restricted to racehorses.

      • Horses need to have weight bared on all 4 legs. If one of those legs is injured, thats 3 legs baring 1,000 pounds of weight. Laminitis will start to develop in any of the good legs. It can be treated if caught very early but in some cases, such as this one, it develops too fast and the horse has to be euthanized.

      • Our mistake is thinking we invented the horse. We didn’t. Wild horses suffer injury to their legs, broken legs even. And survive to run and carry on. Your mistake is thinking you can outthink the Creator of these wonderful beings. Yes, let them out of their stall, they will move as they need to keeping the blood flow and healing. Of course, since trainers feed the horses such high powered foods and meth-like supplements, the horse will have excess energy but they are self healers. Wild horses have come in with broken backs, broken legs that have healed sideways, compound fractures that have healed. Some have died as a result of their injuries, but they have died doing what they were meant to do – think for themselves. Evidently, you have a lot to learn Raquel

      • Its spelled RACHEL thank you very much. And no, it would be abuse to let these animals just run loose with laminitis and broken limbs flopping about. Are really serious? You would let an animal suffer like that all cuz the wild horse is able to self heal? Race horses are not wild, domesticated horses are definitely not wild and need humans to live. These horses grew up around people and need medical help when they are injured.

  3. 7 horses under Todd PLetcher ?? What is he doing to these horses ? Trainers like this should be investigated.
    Why would owners continue to use him? They should investigate unless he owns all the horses. Either way, he should be investigated. The horses should be tested for drugs.

    • I have alwasy disliked Pletcher. He uses Lasix alot in his horses and has had many deaths over the years, he is great at winning with his 2 year olds but after their 2 and 3 year old season (if not severely injured) they are burned out. Many of his horses retire early and are just used up after having hard 2 and 3 year old campaigns. He trains his horses hard and fast, but has successful results. I think people continue to go to him with their horses because they know he will get them fit to win and they do win, alot. I used to like him, until i have noticed how many horses die or get injured in his care over the years. Its hard to become a fan of a horse of his when you know that horse might not last forever.

  4. What happened to Zaikov was a shame. He has only had 2 starts and 2 wins. Was plagued by injury here and there (nothing too severe) so its not like he was raced to death. He was the son of champion Wait a While, i believe her first offspring. And was to be a rising star with the way he won his races (won his debut by 14 and 1/4 lengths).

  5. It was a shame what happened to Uncle Mo too !! Bad liver ended his career very early !!!!!
    But this is racing and the industry loves the Pletchers, the Bafferts, the O’Neills …..

    • No young horse should have a bad liver. I believe it was a reaction to the drugs that were given to him. And lets not forget Devil May Care. She died of a liver disease at a young age, or well was euthanized from it.

  6. Regarding Zaikov and his fractured humerus…from Dr. Sue Stover/UC Davis Racing Injury Prevention Program;

    -“Humeral fractures typically occur due to bone weakening associated with a pre-existing stress fracture.”
    -“Humeral stress fractures commonly occur in horses when they…are coming back into training from a layup.”

    In April, Zaikov was recovering from a “minor shin issue”, according to Pletcher. Pletcher went on to say, “He’s in Ocala recovering from a little shin problem, but he’ll be back. He’s a very talented horse, and we’re hoping to have him ready to make his return this summer at Saratoga.” Well of course, you are Pletcher…a horse not racing is a horse draining your precious bank account.

    A racehorse doesn’t need double-digit starts to be “raced to death”. Zaikov is a racing casualty. I could care less if he was a “rising star” or a “cheap claimer”..but of course, the industry and all of its followers and “wanna-be’s” like to chat up the “sad, just one of those things” deaths of their stars. It’s so sickening.

    RIP Zaikov…a child equine who suffered and died for the entertainment of the racing industry and its supporters.

  7. And poor Perfect Danger. Raced before he turned 3 years old, then raced nearly monthly…until he was off for almost a full year between his 5th and 6th race. Dead after the 7th. The sad, tragic life of this immature colt. Dead – years before even reaching his prime. And for what…

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