At Del Mar, a $100 Fine For a Couple Whacks to a Horse’s Head

From the most recent Del Mar Stewards Minutes:

August 26 – “Exercise rider Jelani Grant received the following penalty issued in a ruling. It involved Mr. Grant hitting a morning galloper in the head twice with his hand. He said he lost his temper after the horse jerked its head up and hit him in the face. He promised it would not happen again.” Fine: $100.

A jerky horse, a lost temper, a couple whacks to the head. But all is good because “he promised it would not happen again.”

This is horseracing.

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    • I’d like to take a horse whip to people who say that. it is such a lie. Just a way to justify an unnecessary death. I must say I would like to take a whip to quite a few people. See how they like it.

  1. Last week at the Del Mar racetrack protest, a nice gentleman approached me and in his broken English told me he had seen a lot of abuse at the stables – including a person who hit a horse in the face, one side, then the other. I wonder if it was this same incident. Better call Child Protective Services, because I am told frequently that thoroughbred owners and trainers treat the horses better than they treat their own children.

    • I don’t think many owners abuse their hoses, but in my time on the track I have seen horses hit with the rubber covered chain that sits above the stall guard. I have seen them shanked over and over for a small offense. I have seen them smacked on the side of the head, viciously, and also for “fun”, as if the horses enjoy it. On a tour of the Thoroughbred Training Center in Lexington, a trainer continually slapped his filly in the face as he talked to us. Horses who live at the track are treated poorly. Yes, they have clean stalls, they have food, and they get baths, which is always shown on any tv racing program. But the truth is they are kept in cages, just a little larger, proportionately, than a good sized dog crate. They get very little sun and very little exercise. They are not really fit, No other athlete spends 23 hours per day in a cage, or in their bathroom.. They are on drugs, They must stand for all those hours with nothing to do. They have no companionship and they are herd animals, for which psychological health comes from being in a herd. NOTHING about their life is natural.

  2. All I can say to all of you is unless you, yourself was there to see the incident from start to end, you have no reason to even make a comment. You are simply a hypocrite. I will keep this short and end with this, keep your comments to yourself and don’t forget to change the litter box today because I am certain that a cat is all you can take care of.

    • The horse jerked his head up and rider allegedly gets hit in the face – rider obviously equine uneducated if he regards that a horse just should not do this to him. Hit, hit the horse in the head that solves the problem?……..violence is never appropriate for any living creature? There could be a number of reasons why the horse did this and a likely reason is that the rider was yanking on its mouth with the reins causing it pain through the bit. A horse does not jerk its head for no reason at all and it usually means that he is experiencing discomfort of some kind. Horsemanship, this cur wouldn’t know what that was!

  3. I’ve been reading this site for awhile now. I was never a big fan of horse racing as I have never been keen on having animals used in entertainment industries. But I also thought the people in horse racing took care of their horses and they were part of their family just as mine are. I read other sites, too, ones where stories are told about rescued thoroughbred racehorses. But over time, I have seen that they never want to hold anyone in racing responsible for the horse ending up in a bad place. I have even seen different racehorse rescues say this, too. It’s never the fault of the horse’s last owner or trainer, they always say! I have my ideas on why they do this, but in the end, I think they are hurting the horses yet to need a home out of racing. I honestly think it is always the racing industry’s responsibility. They are the ones who bred them for racing. They are the ones who raced them. I think they must understand that there will never be enough homes for all of these horses! But that doesn’t stop them!

    I just read a story about a rescued racehorse named Grand Strand. The same thing, the author of the story said the former trainer was upset about this horse being found in a killpen. I googled this trainer and found where he has done this before with a horse named Little Cliff. He was only upset that he was caught! But even the rescuer of Grand Strand doesn’t hold the trainer responsible. And yesterday I saw on Facebook where ANOTHER successful racehorse was found! His name is Muny and again, according to the organization trying to help this horse, his racing “connections” aren’t responsible! Well, they must have placed him! Do a better job! I read about these racehorses being dumped almost daily! But their previous owners are never responsible?

    I did comment on the story about Grand Strand, and I’ve never commented before. I’ve just always read. And I read these stories almost everyday. And I believe that the horse racing industry breeds excessively and makes it impossible for all of their horses to find good homes when they are finished using them.

    I’m tired of reading the lies. That’s what they are, when the authors of these blogs and the members of these rescues say no one from racing is responsible. And I’m done reading their lies. You reports facts here and I appreciate that. It does nothing to help the horses to always say no one is to blame. And it’s a lie and I don’t think I am the only one that sees that.

    Thank you for this site.

    Victoria Leonard

    • Excellent, Victoria. Your observations are dead-on. In the absence of a clear, unequivocal stand against racing (and all the other industries that domesticate and exploit horses for profit), those feel-good rescue stories do nothing for horsekind. Sure, the rescues at issue help individual horses (selfless, admirable work), but by remaining silent on – or worse, by helping to promote – the very industries that make their rescues necessary, they help guarantee that that need will ever be. Truth is, many of these rescues receive funding from racing people, making public opposition all but impossible. The industry gets good publicity, and the mass of horses continue to suffer – with most (yes, it’s still most) retired to the slaughterhouse floor.

    • So glad you figured that out, Victoria. Facts are presented here. That’s it. And the racing supporters cannot dispute the facts so they deflect and deny. Their feeble attempts at justifying the cruelties are laughable. They are fools. Tragically, these fools enable the continued maiming and death of sentient, enslaved horses!

      Thank you for reading here. Spread the word!

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