This, For $2 Bets – 8/14/17-8/20/17

Last week in U.S. horseracing – not including training and harness casualties.

Charm the Lute “pulled up in distresseuthanized” at Louisiana
Sara Ines “vanned off” at Mountaineer
Celestial Image “returned bleeding from the nostrils” at Thistledown
Chileanna “vanned off” at Del Mar
Meteoroid “bad step…euthanized on track” at Saratoga
Nice Shot “pulled up in distress” at Thistledown
Elusive Weekend “returned bleeding from the nostrils” at Thistledown
Suzie’s Dream “vanned off” at Evangeline
Microphone Fiend “fell, vanned off” at Evangeline
Battle Tux “vanned off” at Gulfstream
Sayonara Rose “bad step…tragically had to be euthanized on track” at Saratoga
Burning Encore “vanned off” at Albuquerque
Armored Knight “eased while bleeding visibly from the nostrils” at Columbus
Fight Thru “vanned off” at Del Mar
Mongolian King “eased while bleeding from both nostrils” at Laurel
Sudden Queen “vanned off, bled” at Ruidoso
Corona Razor “vanned off” at Ruidoso
Mr Lane “vanned off” at White Pine
KB’s Girl “vanned off” at Albuquerque
Strangers No More “vanned off” at Delaware
Kutuzov “went wrong, vanned off” at Ellis
Horsty “vanned off” at Emerald
War Demon “appeared in distress, vanned off” at Finger Lakes
HR Express “bled, fell, vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Favorite Hot Cartel “vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Galaxia “vanned off” at Monmouth
Lady Liana “vanned off” at Penn
Silver Ice “broke down” at Santa Rosa
Unchained Melody “vanned off” at Saratoga
Ronson “injured…euthanized” at Thistledown
Dreamy “injured…euthanized” at Thistledown
Polish Princess “fell, vanned off” at Albuquerque
Win D Prado “vanned off” at Arlington
Fiesty Town Lady “vanned off” at Emerald
Credit Ready “broke down” at Laurel
Martini Call “vanned off” at Los Alamitos
Swinging Chango “vanned off” at Mountaineer
Bm Lil Kool Cash “vanned off” at Prairie
Eagle On Fire V “vanned off” at Ruidoso
Eb Traffic Rock “fell, vanned off” at White Pine

(Chart Terms: “Broke Down” – racing-speak for dead; “Vanned Off” – required horse ambulance to get off the track; many, if not most, of these animals will resurface on my year-end FOIA kill-reports; “Bled” – usually indicates pulmonary hemorrhage)

(source: Equibase)


  1. Please don’t tell us that the trainers and jockeys care about the horse. What they care about is the almighty $. If you care so much, then why do you drug them and make them run in conditions that are not fit? Yes those horses are comparable to athletes but when an athlete drugs themselves up then it is against all the rules. Why do they drug themselves up? To make sure that their millions of dollars contract is in place. People have choices, animals don’t. Please don’t say you care. I went to the track and what I saw were people dragging their kids behind them crying that they didn’t want to be there. People digging bottles out of the trash because they most likely just lost all they had and people cheering on the beating of a horse with a stick. Please don’t say it doesn’t hurt. Why is it alright to beat an animal to run but if we ever did this to a human runner we would probably see jail time? Please stop making excuses for yourselves. Just be honest and say that it is all about the money. If you weren’t making money from the horse, would you own one? I didn’t think so.

  2. I own two horses. I used to board them for roughly 6 years before we moved them out to our own property. So $200 a month times 2, for 6 years is $28,800. Out at our place, we’ve paid $6000 for new fencing, $2000 for a run in shelter, $3000 for a new water, and are still getting quotes for a small barn. This, of course, isn’t counting vet, farrier, feed, and other things. My horses have never earned me anything beyond a few dollars and cheap ribbons at local shows. But they’ve given me much more than just money. Many racehorse owners are the same, despite what this site will lead you to believe. A man I know owned a horse who couldn’t run for beans, so they pulled him off the track as he wasn’t making money. The wife decided to keep the horse and they show together. Another owner had a horse who bowed a tendon, so he took care of that horse for TWO YEARS to recover him before selling him to a HUS ammie. Heck, my own horse, an off track thoroughbred, was injured, rehabbed, raced one last time the next year, and sold to a beautiful hunter barn after the owners realized it was time for him to retire from racing.
    These same owners recently had a horse break down and die during a race — a horse who is listed on this very site. These owners are good people, who care for their animals, give them proper time to heal, and retired them when they’re ready. But sometimes, shit just happens. It happened to my friend whose beloved horse suddenly succumbed to colic, it happened to an old barn mate whose (very tall) horse stepped over the fence and got its hoof shucked clean off by the hotwire on top, and it happened to my boy’s old owners on that fateful day. It’s easy to assume it was the evil owners and vile trainers who set the horse up for pain and injury and suffering, and it does happen, but that isn’t the worst feeling as a horse owner. Sometimes, you do everything right, you breed responsibly and train correctly, never drug your horse or overwork them, choose the best conditions and jockey, and — despite what some people seem to naively think is impossible — love the horse with all your heart. And yet, shit still happens. And that’s just life.

    I know most of the people who comment on this site have little to no experience with horses, much less racing. They are concerned bystanders, which shows their kindness, but their lack of knowledge causes more harm than good. Horse racing does have problems, but this site, I’ve discovered, doesn’t seem to know exactly what they really are or the amount in which they occur.

    There is a simple fact to all of this: horse racing is not going anywhere. Not any time soon. There are many people who are perfectly comfortable with all aspects of life — yes, including death — on the racetrack, and will come back again and again. So instead of having an all-or-nothing claim, which will not create change and likely never will, try working to make life better for racehorses. Encourage stricter punishments for drug abuse, especially in states like New Mexico. Petition to have horses stay on the vets list (meaning they cannot race) longer for injuries such as lameness. Try to get bigger purses in races for 4+ year old horses and smaller purses for 2 year olds, thus encouraging a horse’s connections to aim for long term soundness and health. Heck, even try getting your groom’s license at a local track and ensure the health and wellbeing of the horses yourself, with your own hands. I like to use the metaphor of the racing industry being like a horse itself. If you are trying to lead it and pull with all of your weight, the horse will balk, brace against the halter, shut down, and resist any efforts to move it. However, if you are gentle, walk alongside them, use kind words and encouragement and perhaps a carrot or two, and guide the horse quietly, you can move it anywhere you want.

    Horse racing had to change from whatever it was to what it is now. It can be changed from what it is now to something better. But it will take work, and time, setbacks and small triumphs, and I can assure you that it won’t be done by a bunch of people sitting on the internet. So by God, get your asses out there and make the world the place you wish it would be.

    • You make it all sound so copacetic, even romantic, and yet – horseracing, when you strip it down to its very core, is gambling; horseracing maims and destroys thousands of animals each year for $2 bets. Facts, as the great John Adams once said, are stubborn things. And no matter what kind of positive spin you attempt to put on it, you just can’t get around the facts I report here. So what am I doing to help horses, to “make the world the place [I] wish it would be”? I’m working every day to bring down this wicked industry. And let me be as crystal clear as possible, working to end it is the only way to help racehorses; anything short of that – “reforms,” “welfare improvements” – will only help to perpetuate the suffering. You, Ms. or Mr. Smith – probably a pseudonym, like the vast majority of the cowardly apologists who come on here – are on the wrong side of history. Time will prove me correct.

    • You need to get some of your facts straight Sammy,
      Many of us commenting here have extensive experience in this business in many different capacities.
      Furthermore, you don’t have to participate in dog fighting to know that it’s morally wrong, and the same goes for just about any other business that exploits animals.
      There is only one way to stop the dying, and that’s to shut this business down.
      No changes – no compromises.
      This business is vile from the start of the life cycle to the end and everything in between.
      It has got to go and it will go – you just wait and see.
      So you need to get your ass out there and find something else to support because this business will die just like all the racehorses who are dying in the dirt for this pathetic excuse for bets, and egos.

  3. Let me tell you the story of what happened to one of these horses…. I ended up with “Strangers No More” who was “vanned off”. You have no idea how tragic her story ended up being. After being sold for top dollar at auction she bowed a tendon (see her name above) and was indeed “vanned off”. But after being promised a good retirement by the farm that “bought” her she ended up being starved and sold to a slaughterhouse. At the last chance auction from the slaughterhouse, she was rescued and sent to quarantine at a vets office. The woman who dropped her off at quarantine never went back for her and she sat there at the vet’s office for several months and starved some more. When HERD (Helping Equines Regain Dignity) finally got news of her situation she was rescued and brought to SC. By the time they got her off of the truck, she collapsed from malnutrition and dehydration. This all happened to her within her first few years of life. She is safe and sound with me now but her story is not unlike the other stories of these other horses that were “vanned off”. The racing industry needs to be held responsible for the damage they cause and the animal abuse that they support and turn a blind eye to. If you want to follow along with Strangers No More’s story you can check out my Patreon.

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