Dead: Grachus the Hunter at Santa Anita, Wild Target at Aqueduct

Gambling killed (at least) two more horses yesterday:

Grachus the Hunter “broke down” in the 6th at Santa Anita and was subsequently euthanized. He was four years old.

Wild Target, says the NYS Gaming Commission, “suffered [a] cardiovascular event while breezing [at Aqueduct] and died on the track.” “Investigation,” of course, “to follow.” The 6-year-old was being prepped for race #47.

This is horseracing.

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  1. Sickening, despicable, and gut wrenching.
    These horses are being sent to their death every day.
    There were a few pro-horse racing posters in the comment section under the article “Hopportunity” on the Bloodhorse webpage.
    These comments are so typical of these heartless idiots.
    So sorry for Grachus, but these things happen or something like that.
    Name me one other business on this planet where horses dye every day at such an alarming rate.
    There are none.

  2. You post that an “investigation” will be done , do you understand they are most likely speaking of a necropsy ? Which will show actual cause of death ?
    Gina , I know a Vet who also has a private practice off the track and that Vet said they see more injuries and put more horses down from off the track than on the track.

    • During an undercover investigation by PETA (2014) into the thoroughbred racing industry, assistant trainer Scott Blasi was filmed exclaiming:

      “You cannot believe how many they hurt and kill before they even get to the race track. It’s mindboggling”.

      • Carolyn , your opinion , from your history means less to me, Gina at least has a. Leg to stand on .

    • You are unaware of my history…….

      No comment from you re

      During an undercover investigation by PETA (2014) into the thoroughbred racing industry, assistant trainer Scott Blasi was filmed exclaiming:

      “You cannot believe how many they hurt and kill before they even get to the race track. It’s mindboggling”.

      Well of course not…..because Blasi was telling the truth…. and there’s nothing you can do about that…!

  3. Also , exactly what do you want when a horse breaks down ? You want the tears and the silence , the mourning ? Go to the barn of that horse , see the groom , the gallop person , the connections , you will get it there .

    • And how do the grooms, the gallop persons, and the connections feel when they know so many of “their” horses are sent to slaughter ?

      PS. The core of this business is deceit. There was an “investigation” into the sudden deaths of 6 or 7 horses in Baffert’s barn too. I’m afraid these “investigations” mean absolutely nothing.

      The business operates outside the law concerning animal cruelty and cheating as well as the “laws” of human decency.

      • Rose, you are so right. The industry is like the wild west. It’s controlled by the industry. Period. That says it all.
        Even the drug testing is controlled by the industry. There is unequivocally no doubt in my mind that serious cheating is going on in this process. There is no way to prove me wrong because no outside, NEUTRAL investigation is ever conducted.
        I do know this. When I was in California certain Trainers there were using morphine. I saw it in the paperwork. When I was exposed to that paperwork very briefly, I wanted to nail them.
        However, the paperwork was gone, and they told me to back down because their attorneys claim that a certain amount of morphine is allowed in the system on race day. I saw that paperwork as well. It was in the milligrams – a trace was found consistently in certain Trainers. However, even a trace of morphine is very powerful, and gives the Trainer a huge competitive advantage over the other Trainers in the race who are running. That’s precisely why the rich Owners send their horses to these Trainers knowing full well it’s the best shot they have at winning the big races. How can you compete with this? You can’t. That’s why the same Trainers win all the races year in and year out. When they are caught with anything controversial it eventually gets swept under the carpet, and business as usual continues. Their they are in the winners circle yet again while honest Trainers look on.
        I can tell you that the big name Trainers in this business are very protected, and can do just about anything it seems without any repercussions. Contrast that to other Trainers who play by the rules. If they just step out of line minimally they get pounded into the ground.
        It’s okay for certain Trainers to get away with things, but not others.
        This system is set up for not only people to fail, but the racehorses pay the ultimate price.
        Think about it? They are running with multiple drugs into their system (maybe even morphine), joint injections, and electro shock wave therapy. All of this combined literally deadens any pain they may feel which can result in them running until they snap a leg off or die.
        Like I tell Olivia, and other pro-horse racing people who comment on this site. It doesn’t matter if your intentions are good or if you perceive yourself as being good. You can’t be good, be honest, and win races against these multiple violating drug Trainers who have the system behind them.
        You certainly can’t make a living. That’s for sure. I have zippo respect for most of the big name Trainers in this game not that they care. They are too busy running to the bank to deposit cash or wherever they deposit the money.
        The horses running honest (within the rules) can have NATURALLY talented horses (which are the ones who should really be going to the breeding shed), but can’t hold a candle to these Trainers who have just about everything, but the kitchen sink in them. Then, if caught, their bevy of attorneys, rich owners, and even the commissions protect them and/or stand down.
        In essence, these syndicates are buying the races, buying the system.
        These people are spending upwards of $500,000 on one racehorse so it only stands to reason if they have this kind of money to blow, then it’s possible that they buy a race.
        The rest of the horses seem to be just fillers.

  4. Debra, I don’t see me referring to an investigation in my comments here. Perhaps you are referring to another post?
    That said, I think all racehorses who die on the track should automatically get a necropsy done, INCLUDING tissue sample testing. I have seen necropsy reports, and most don’t conduct tissue sample drug testing unless this has changed. These reports are public, and should be made readily available on the commissions websites.
    You make a good point when you say that a vet acknowledged that many deaths are taking place at off-track sites such as training centers where there is no mandatory requirement to perform necropsies. This further validates the inefficiency of the industry, and failure to protect racehorses especially if that training center is certified. Certified means that workouts are considered official and are posted so that entries can be taken directly from that training center
    You suggest that the stable personnel get upset when a horse breaks down somehow implying that they care.
    Caring doesn’t preclude the fact that they are supporting this revolving door of breakdowns, and exploitation of a racehorse.
    Mere emotions alone doesn’t do anything to prevent the deaths on racetracks. The only thing that is going to stop this madness is when racetracks shut down.
    This can’t come sooner for me. I don’t support horse racing, and I certainly don’t support anybody involved in this industry no matter how emotional they are.
    In fact, their emotions are distorted. Instead of getting upset they should do something about it, and stop exploiting horses.

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