Saratoga ’16 Records First Kill

With the season opener still a week away, Saratoga ’16 has already recorded its first kill. 2-year-old Squire Creek broke while training yesterday morning and, according to the Gaming Commission, was euthanized on the track. The equine child was being prepped for his first race. For trainer Todd Pletcher, this makes 16 dead racehorses since 2010 – in NY alone.

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Also from NY: 11-year-old The Grey Bullet was “found dead in his stall” at Vernon Downs Thursday. He was trained by Wayne Hughes.


  1. So sad! 2 other lives lost to the cruelty…..and for human entertainment! ;-( Would love to be at the protest next Saturday!

  2. Oh yes – the infamous Todd Pletcher. This revered Trainer by the industry gets a massive amount of 2 year olds every year and many breakdown under his direct care.
    Yet, the owners just keep on sending them to Todd Pletcher most knowing full well that there is a percentage of racehorses that always breakdown in his care.
    Todd Pletcher, like the other big name Trainers, have a never ending revolving door of racehorses that go into their barns in decent shape and come out in wheelchairs if they make it out alive.
    These Trainers can’t CAN’T train without a doping regime. Of course this doping was out in full display when PETA released their video of top Trainer Steve Asmussen’s racing stable.
    You must realize that this video is an accurate reflection of what these racehorses go through on a daily basis in most Trainers racing stables, but especially at the highest level, this never ending cycle of doping, lameness, doping, training, doping, running, career-ending injuries and/or breakdowns is all part of it.
    Let me also be clear that these horses going into “the Toddster’s” (his nickname that he likes) racing stable come from the most richest owners and the most opulent farms in the country if not the world.
    So the notion that racehorses that come from elite backgrounds are so well taken care of is repeatedly blown out of the water like this example today because if dying is taking care of a racehorse then the word “royalty” needs to be redefined.
    Like I’ve always maintained this industry is nothing but a cruelty circus, and death camp.
    It doesn’t matter where the racehorse comes from because they are all subjected to the mandatory operating procedures which are: whipping/beating, doping, dumping and/or dying.
    These operating procedures are necessary in order to keep lame and/or sore horses with ongoing chronic issues filling races, generating wagering profit which is the main goal.
    This delusion that they “love,” “care,” and treat them like royalty is just a delusion.
    The sad part is that these people actually believe this to be true.
    They are confronted with the daily reality, and condone the daily reality of these racehorses that are turned into virtual profit slaves and/or ego boosters for these despicable people.
    The richest owners in the country are well aware of what’s going on, and still participate in this reality by sending their racehorses into these torture chambers (AKA stalls) where they are repeatedly restrained for ongoing injections into their joints or veins – pick your inlet.
    The last time I reviewed the “contract” to send a racehorse to Todd Pletcher or any of the other big name Trainers it was a virtual contract to use, abuse, and do what’s necessary to get the horse to perform. If that meant dying in their care then the owner could not sue them. In many contracts they couldn’t remove the horse because it required a minimum amount of time in that barn.
    The contracts that I reviewed (with no legal background) seemed to be a carte blanche credit card for abuse, cruelty, doping, dumping and/or dying with no legal repercussions whatsoever.
    When a racehorse breakdowns, that is owned by a wealthy owner, many go out and buy another one for 6-figures at Keeneland or one of the other sales auctions.
    If this isn’t stupidity then it’s condoning the ongoing abuse of sentiment beings.
    Of course this is all shrouded in the delusion that everything is fine in la-la land.
    Well, it’s not fine. It’s not okay.
    SQUIRE CREEK – so sorry for you. So sorry for the life that you were born into. A life of a slave generating profit for many people along the way before you died in the dirt for Todd Pletcher, and his connections.
    You were born and bred into royalty. The gentle rolling, and beautiful grassy knolls of bluegrass Kentucky – a state that is a heaven for horses. You were probably born into a huge stall that accommodated you, and your broodmare Mom so comfortably as you nestled into her side. You were probably given the best hay, and oats, the best vets, and the best start in life for one reason: to be prepared and sold at the slave auction for profit. All this care was not because they loved you, but because you would probably make some people lots of money, and you did.
    Keeneland 2015 Yearling Sale. Hip #3532. You were sold for $75,000 immediately turning a huge profit for the people who bred you.
    Then you were put into training, probably pushed hard, in order to get you ready for the 2 year old and training sale at OBS in Florida. The beautiful bluegrass hills a distant past now.
    You would be broke, and turned into servitude in order to prep you for your next profit turning venture all the while receiving the “royal” treatment in order to make somebody money.
    You didn’t disappoint.
    In March 2016 OBS 2 year-old in training sale. Hip #346. You produced one of the fastest times going in 9.4 seconds for your slave masters. Your beautiful chestnut coat blazing under the hot Florida sun as you ran your butt-off for the people who would make huge profit off of you, and you didn’t disappoint. You hammered down at $170,00.
    While hundreds of your fellow racehorses were stepping onto a slaughterhouse truck, while rescue groups couldn’t conjure up $200 to get them out of harms way, your connections wrote out a check for $170,000.
    What you didn’t know was that you wouldn’t make it out alive. You wouldn’t get a chance to be dumped at a kill auction like many of your fellow racehorses who are no longer profitable.
    So on you went.
    You were now probably part of a doping, training, doping, and running plan as you may have been experiencing some physical issues at this point. It seems rather odd if you were 100% sound after being pounded into the ground at the ripe age of 1.5 years old.
    Of course your slave masters have it all worked out because they deny the release of medical records when racehorses die in the dirt. After all, they wouldn’t want the unsuspecting public to actually know about what’s been given to a horse prior to collecting millions in wagering profit. That would be too transparent for this industry. They have to protect the abusive slave masters, and obscene profits at all costs.
    That cost is left up to racehorses like you Squire Creek – you pay the ultimate cost as you lay dying in the dirt for this cruelty circus, and death camp.
    There was no amount of opulent surroundings, the best “royal” care, and the 6-figure profits you turned that would save your life.
    You are now just another statistic for this legitimized death camp that is being financially supported by entities that want nothing or have nothing to do with the exploitation.

    • Wow thank you so much for everything you said in 2015 I worked on the racetrack I saw all of this that you explained I couldn’t take it I had no idea when I thought well it would be cool to work on a racetrack after being a lifelong horse owner to be with these horses every day the horrors I saw was unbelievable thank you thank you I am not as good as writer as you so again I thank you for every word

      • Thanks Denise for your feedback.
        If anybody reading my comments doesn’t believe me – then go work on a racetrack for a couple of months.
        You will experience, and directly witness things that are said here.
        If you don’t believe that, then just look at the facts.
        The facts are indisputable – racehorses are dying on tracks all over the U.S.A.
        Please feel free to share your experiences on this blog.
        Many of us ex-race trackers are speaking out about it, and the more we collectively comment the more the truth will get out for people to see what they are actually supporting.

      • We like you Denise thought it would be cool to actually gallop horses on a real recognized track. We became so terribly disillusioned from the cruelty and illegal practices done to most of the horses we galloped. We left in 2005 as we HATED to see the lip chains/ drugs, fists in the faces of the horses we loved with passion. The horses KNEW we loved them all and we could do things with them through patience and understanding that very few race-trackers could, such as achieving the fastest workout of the day. Last Peak most likely never had been able to go that fast, as he had never before had a rider that didn`t use a whip on him! Were proud to say were EX-RACETRACKERS and will never go back!

    • I agreed with you in 100 percent. Should be banned racehorses I am sick to hear a horrible story about horses for years.

  3. Unfortunately its not just the upper levels that see the drugs / illegal shock wave/ veterinary procedures. We have seen much abuse at the lower levels too.Thank you Gina for the contract information. It was very interesting to read and informative. The too fast prep sales we have always disliked. We were involved on the class 4 and county fair circuits. What goes on there is absolutely despicable and horrible. We have seen trainers hook up horses using electrodes connected to several car batteries! We still don`t know what the purpose of that was to this day. With the closing of our State fairgrounds track over a decade ago, the industry is now using a small coastal county track where we first galloped a thoroughbred for the first time. The industry is trying to use that track to keep up the condition or get fitted up horses before our Stronach recognized track opens for training in the fall. It is a SMALL tightly cornered “bull ring” track. Last summer at that county track, a trainer actually had to ride the horse she was training in a race as a jockey too, because an earlier horse had fallen and the rider was injured thereby creating a shortage of riders for the next race! The trainer later said she was hoping never to have to ride on that track as a jockey again despite that track was where she had first started riding thoroughbreds as well. She later commented that it was not as bad a trip as she had feared. All kinds of shenanigans take place in our state at the county fair level. We always thought you could not jockey and train the same horse! Apparently in our state you can, with were assuming stewards permission. She trained / rode for a separate owner of the horse according to Equibase records.

    • Yes Fred and Joan – it happens at all levels as I repeatedly stated on previous comments.
      In fact, the lower tier levels get all the racehorses that are usually already lame from being used and abused at the upper levels.
      You know all of this, but anyways I’m disgusted by it all.
      I, too, am proud that I left and was not “successful” at condoning the cruel, and abusive procedures necessary in order to be part of this cruelty circus, and death camp.

  4. Always a Tradgedy when a young horse breaks down but 40 mph landing on one leg will do that theses horses are in Peak form and well cared for. People die everyday as well from Cancer Heart desease Blood Disorders etc. some of these Horses do incredible things like American Pharoah Secretariat Riva Ridge Affirmed Alydar and many Others and lead productive lives Breeding and Foaling. Tradgedys happen but the good out ways the Bad. When you see the Opening of Saratoga stakes this Weekend and Watch Songbird you might change your Direction

    • Well, Ms. Piney, if going 40 miles per hour and landing on one leg “will do that” so that you and your ilk can be entertained, then it is time to put an end to this gambling industry that “will do that”. For every Songbird, there are hundreds more horses that toil at the bottom level of the claiming ranks and, when they don’t hit the board, they are shuffled off into the slaughter pipeline. Therefore, for those of us that took off our rose colored glasses years ago, we would like to reassure you that we will not be watching Songbird at Saratoga nor will we be changing our direction. I want to be very clear…racing needs to end! Find another source of entertainment. Got it?

    • Perhaps you should check out the auctions and follow the horses to Canada. Maybe that would change your direction.

    • Gosh Susan, you totally don’t get it. People dying of cancer are going through something horrible for sure, but not brought on by human interference. Horses dying on racetracks are absolutely dying miserably because of human interference and greed. And in many cases it’s directly caused by their subjection to various kinds of torture (drugs, electric shock) to make them run despite injuries they already have. What don’t you understand about how wrong this is? Because the horses look PRETTY?

  5. Right on Mary.
    The only direction that should change is that this cruelty circus, and these death camps close down.

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