Permian Killed in Secretariat Stakes; His Trainer Disappointed in Last-Place Finish

“We’ve lost the horse. He suffered a catastrophic fracture of his left fore. I was with him on the track for 30 seconds. He was in the process of running a very disappointing race and I believe it was when he was winding down that it happened.” – Mark Johnston, trainer of Permian, as quoted in The Guardian

The “horse lost” was European import Permian, on U.S. soil for yesterday’s Grade 1 Secretariat Stakes at Arlington. The 3-year-old was one of the pre-race favorites – hence Mr. Johnston’s “disappointment” in the last-place finish. The Guardian said Permian’s snapped leg was so bad that “he had to be destroyed.”

(Permian. Photo Credit: The Sun)


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  1. Patrick – I read all the comments in the Bloodhorse last night regarding this breakdown. Apparently – the horse looked off much earlier in the race and there are many people questioning that the jockey didn’t pull the horse up – and instead kept pushing him and hitting and whipping him. There are very many people upset over this – and I even noted a comment that questioned why we still abuse horses for entertainment. People are starting to notice.

    • TY for that input, SD. It’s sickening what animals are subjected to for racing fans’ entertainment and bettors’ gambling fixes.

      With a site like this and all of its supporters who share it, people cannot help but notice!

      Where Ringling has gone and where SeaWorld is headed, so must this unnecessary gambling industry go.

  2. I watched the race. The horse injured his leg in the beginning third of the race. The jockey obviously knew and felt it but didn’t pull the horse up and get off. The jockey should be fired. The horse ran a ‘disappointing race’ because he was in great pain. What an amazingly brave horse. What a cowardly jockey. Horse. Didn’t need to put down. I would have taken him. Fire the jockey!! Complete loser in life. He should be investigated and fined and not allowed on the back of a horse again. Where is the racing commission?

  3. This smells like a deliberate planned death for equine insurance,
    Of course we the public will NEVER know what chronic issues PERMIAN probably had because his medical records immediately became “secret” as soon as he touched American soil.
    Furthermore, I want everybody to know that there is a very distinct pattern of horses who come over from international destinations that have catastrophic breakdowns during their first race here.
    The equine insurance policy, most likely in place, usually gets paid out sooner due to the geographical distance, and their ability to hire a vet here who has no clue about a possible pre-existing condition.
    As soon as the connections become aware that their horse has a condition that will reduce their value for the equine insurance policy then it’s in their best financial interest to ensure that the horse dies on the track.
    Killing for equine insurance has been going on in this business for a very long time, and it is going on right now.
    Some of the biggest name trainers are participants in these planned deaths allegedly.
    This is the dirty world of horse racing.

  4. Within a month of his last race in England the horse was transported around 4,000 miles and raced to his death.
    He had earned about $600,000 and won a grade 1 at Ascot in June.
    I believe the posted photo is of him winning at Ascot.
    What his connections did with this colt does not make sense. Sad.
    R.I.P Permian

    • Correction, his last start was in France and not England as I said. The horse was transported from England to France and perhaps back to England and then to Arlington in less than 4 weeks. That is hard on a 3 yr. old.
      Further, he was started 4 times in 4 weeks as a 2yr. old. What were these people trying to prove ?

      • If an Equine insurance policy was in place it would have been valued at Permian’s earnings so that would be about $600,000 minimum because usually it’s more like 1 million considering his stallion potential, and that’s where they were heading initially because he was still a colt.
        So if he came up with a physical issue after his last race in France, only the connections would be privy to that.
        If they risked running him it could have reduced his equine insurance policy value if he didn’t perform.
        So it seems plausible, like many international horses that ship here and die, that he was brought here to die.
        It doesn’t make sense with all the stake races in Europe that they would ship this colt thousands of miles to U.S soil where he dies, and an insurance policy was most likely paid out.
        The connections had a choice, IF he had a physical condition after his last race, then the choice was a reduced equine insurance policy with his entire stallion career in jeopardy or make sure he dies during the race which is usually a condition for these high end equine insurance policies.
        This possible scenario seems to fit all the pieces of the puzzle, and IF this is true then this is so typical of the dirty world of horse racing where racehorses lives are nothing more than a disposable commodity.

  5. “Had to be destroyed” is such a strange phrase and I don’t understand it. I would understand “had to be put down” or “no other option but to euthanize.” I’ll never understand…..

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