Idaho’s Dead Racehorses – “Ankle Hanging by a Shred of Skin”

Through a “Public Records Act” request, I have confirmed the following 12 deaths at Les Bois Park in 2014. The notes after the dates come directly from the Racing Commission documents; my notes follow beneath:

7-year-old Walker Rd., April 8, “severe colic, died in stall” – not euthanized
This pathetic gelding was put to the whip 63 times – almost all at the claiming level.

5-year-old Benchmark’s Rebel, April 30, “head trauma, hit head while loose in barn area, died on impact”
4 “career” races: 2 last place, 1 second-to-last, 1 DNF

5-year-old Okey Dokey Legend, May 7, Les Bois 5, “collided with other horse”
Equibase only said “bad step late” – no mention of collision, no mention of euthanasia.

3-year-old Party Boy Streakin, May 7, Les Bois 5, “collided with other horse”
Equibase only said “erratic path” – no mention of collision, no mention of euthanasia.

8-year-old Sum Special Hum, May 14, “heat distress, picked up off racetrack and died at barn” – not euthanized
Probably a pony – last race was in 2009.

3-year-old Alpinheimer, May 17, “fractured withers, flipped over at barn”
Her only race was two weeks prior.

7-year-old New Vogue, May 28, Les Bois 5, “suspensory ligament rupture, sesamoid fracture”
Equibase had this mare as “eased, vanned off.”

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8-year-old Never, June 10, “unknown – found dead in stall”
A $5,000 claimer who had been running in the rear over his last five starts.

6-year-old Given Episode, July 16, Les Bois 10, “multiple displaced fractures of the carpal bones”
Equibase merely had her as “eased.”

2-year-old Heza Fast Wagon, July 19, Les Bois 3, “RF ankle was disarticulated from the parent bone and hanging by a shred of skin”
Equibase had this equine child as finishing the race without incident.

3-year-old My Bananarama, July 23, “hit head in paddock”
Her last race was almost a year prior; she finished last of 10.

8-year-old Possy Beach, July 23, Les Bois 9, “open fracture to the ankle”
Equibase had him as “no factor, vanned off.”

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  1. Not much of the callous treatment of the horses by racing industry employees surprises me anymore. But I must admit, reading how the horses on this list died has brought me to my knees. Still trying to digest this incredible cruelty. My dear God…how can anyone who claims to love and advocate for these poor creatures continue to support horseracing? Racing apologists…how many more horses must die before you speak up for them and demand this entertainment industry ceases to exist? HOW MANY MORE?

  2. When is this pathetic abuse, and cruel industry going to be declared illegal? I hope it happens soon because anytime is not soon enough. People in this industry insist that there are good people. You are not good people if you support this industry in any way. In fact, you are partly responsible for these deaths because very few speak out about what’s going on. You know darn well that if you speak out they will take your stalls away or make it impossible for you to make a living. I know. It happened to me. If they are silencing people who are speaking out against this unspeakable horror then one must conclude that they deliberately uphold the continued abuse, and exploitation of the racehorse. This is an industry that witnessed abuse at the top levels of the game in Steve Assmussen’s barn, and still exonerated him and his Assistant Trainer who often referred to horses as “rats.” This is a business who never seems to clear up the multiple drug violating Trainers which puts both racehorses, and people at risk on a continual basis. Reputable studies conducted by reputable equine vets have consistently confirmed that career-ending, and catastrophic breakdowns are usually a result of chronic issues that are covered up with pain masking drugs. Yet, the continued use of drugs are permitted. Moreover, there seems to be an entire underground of designer drugs that probably are never tested. I allege that the top trainers who miraculously win stake races year in and year out have access to these powerful drugs resulting in high rates of breakdowns. When these Trainers are caught and/or suspended they just put the horse in their Assistant Trainers name, and return to practice yet again. This is an industry who conducts countless meetings with illusions of grandeur that never seem to be implemented. Through all of this lip service nothing ever changes as racehorses are falling to the ground, dying in the dirt, for a $2 bet. This roman coliseum like blood sport was never acceptable back in the Roman days, and it’s antiquated business model should never be allowed in modern day society.

  3. The manner in which many of these horses died is horrendous. Died from colic, not euthanized. That is one of the cruelest, and most painful deaths that a horse can succumb to. What sick person would let an animal suffer that way? Ankle disarticulated and hanging by a thread…collisions with other horses…This all goes well beyond abuse and negligence. These deaths are a tragedy of epic proportion, and it just keeps getting worse. I pray every night for these poor babies. When will it all end? When will these people at the track say “enough is enough”, and walk away? Marlene Thornley

  4. Buy the book Saving Baby by JoAnne Normile. She writes of her experience of entering the world of racing and the price she paid. However, she did something about it and is still today working to save horses. Buy her book, educate politicians, put pressure on our government. Let’s unite. The Bible verse that reads, “What you do unto the least of these, you do also unto Me”. People, animals; woe be to those abusers.

  5. Hey
    Check this out
    There are stipulations in the insurance policies that they have on these horses
    Having the horses die in a certain way
    Appraised at a certain value to collect a certain amount
    These people work for freaken satan and they have no feelings for the jockey or the horse only the money
    It’s about time someone brought these heartless inhumane atrocities into the light

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