Hurta Dead at Hawthorne

In the 9th at Hawthorne last night, 11-year-old (almost 12) Hurta broke down and was euthanized. If not for a pair of fallen jockeys who were transported to the hospital (which usually garners some media attention), Hurta’s final fate would have remained unknown, just the way Racing wants it. Equibase: “HURTA…took a bad step…fell while striking SPECTACULAR ACT…and was subsequently vanned off the course.”

In his final two years of life – a life spent entirely in captivity – Hurta was an almost exclusively cheap ($5,000) claimer. Trainer on death day: Eduardo Rodriguez.

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  1. What sort of certification do any of these people meet to run these horses, care for them, doctor them? A horse that has made it this long is well versed in what he is doing, despite the pushiness of the humans. Horses are first survivors. So what wrong step did these “vultures” take that caused this exprienced runner to fall? Is nothing precious to these people?

  2. Horse should have been retired years ago. 71 races,11 years old doesn’t get more pathetic then this.

  3. Hurta started out as a $10,000 claimer and was claimed in his first start in 2008. He earned $276,000 the hard way, with 75 starts. He was owned by a group of about five and one of those owners, Clarizio, was on board with ownership since Hurta was first claimed in 2008.
    There was no mercy shown to this old track warrior. I hope these people can hold their heads high !

    As Janwindsong asks “Is nothing precious to these people ?”

    • Rose, the only thing precious to these monsters is money. Racing is a gambling industry and is, therefore, based on placing, and winning, bets. Anyone with minimal intelligence should be able to figure that out. As I’ve said for years, whenever you mix money and animals, the animals always end up losing.

  4. The industry’s main publication, The Blood-Horse, recently published an article on the myth of the “took a bad step.” That there is no such thing. That there is ALWAYS an underlying condition or disorder that leads to a breakdown of this magnitude. That it is only a matter of time befire the horse’s action results in a catastrophic breakdown.
    Any readers of this blog who have owned or simply been around horses for any length of time know that if a horse can find a way to hurt himself, he will. The beloved pleasure horse who slipped while running in his paddock and broke a shoulder or stuck his leg through a hay net and pulled a ligament. Because the captive, domestic horse seems so accident prone it is even more unconscionable that his health and welfare in the artificial environment of the racetrack receives so little preventive care.
    Did any reader see the anonymous post under the story of this crime (and it is a crime, not a tragic accident) at the Blood-Horse online article? Poster claims the trainer and vet (vets are too often willing partipants in these crimes) are well known at Hawthorne and Arlington Park for the overmedication and criminal misuse of painkillers and performance enhancing drugs that is endemic at American racetracks.
    We can all do a little bit to alleviate the ugly fates of too many racehorses, and I’m partial to the Thoroughbred, by putting time and/or money behind horse rescues and by communicating our anger and concern to our state legislators.
    Although I respect the position of this blog’s blogkeeper, the halting of racing altogether, I’m not ready to give up on Thoroughbred racing entirely. But I’m pretty much through with racing as it is now conducted in the Americas.

    • Yes, Kari, I saw the post by “Jim”…he stated that Hurta had been in pain for two years and was consistently receiving bute, banamine, and Dex. Those SOB’s who were all complicit in the abuse of this aging gelding…now Hurta is dead and they could not care less.

      There is no “fixing” this greedy industry…it is so diseased…like a painful individual with a cancer that has metastasized to every organ, there is no cure and only death will end the agony.

      There are other ways to be entertained…other ways to get your gambling fix…other ways to earn a living. STOP DESTROYING SENTIENT CREATURES TO MEET YOUR OWN SELFISH “NEEDS”!

      • The sound of Patrick’s call is spreading. We love our horses; these killers who have invaded the wonder world of the racetrack have to go. If it takes shutting down Racing – so be it. When tending to our own lives as part of the puzzle of our society – we MUST stop and we are, 10-20 at a time and know we are responsible for allowing this arocious industry to flourish.

  5. Hurta was 11… These people are just sad. Don’t they have anything better to do then run these precious horses to the ground? We’re in the age of technology there’s no need for these kinds of cruel “sports” anymore.

  6. It really doesn’t get any more pathetic than this. I have worked on the track for years in ny and the trainers with any class retire by 8 year old horse the latest. And they send them to the farm with any thought of a soundness issue. It’s very sad, that horse could have possibly been adopted by someone to love.

  7. Those connections are monsters bottom of the barrel scum. We’re not all monsters. They are freaks.

  8. I recently retired blue canoe who had several battles with hurta he got to be non competitive so now he is living large on a farm with the a girlfriend hurta was a tough old bird did not get the credit due him wish I could have owned him he would still be with us I remember him fondly and miss him I enjoyed watching him run rip old man I’ll see you when I get up there. Will Dorsey

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