Dead: Barbwirebilly, I Dream of Bugsy, anonymous

From Equibase’s account of the 4th at Mahoning yesterday: “BARBWIREBILLY no speed early on, went wrong at the half, pulled up in distress and euthanized on the track and vanned off.” Euthanized, then “vanned off.” Of course – how else to remove a half-ton dead animal? Barbwirebilly was five and under the whip for the 44th time.

Barbwirebilly (far left), moments before dying

The stewards at Golden Gate report this from the 1st January 26: “I Dream Of Bugsy was injured…and was later euthanized due to the severity of the injury.” ‘Twas the 4-year-old’s fourth race; his three previous: a combined 55+ lengths back.

In Santa Anita’s most recent minutes, the stewards report one “fatality” for the week January 22-January 28. The dead horse, alas, remains unidentified.

This is horseracing.


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  1. I’m going to compile a list of corporations that sponsor races and not buy their products or services. A boycott would be good. I know some racetracks are publicly owned companies. If only the opponents of horse racing could afford to run some ads. I’m feeling more sensitive for the horses. They would never ask for anything like this if living in the wild or on a ranch.

    • For what it’s worth, Richard. In Australia some racehorse advocates lobbied certain companies that were providing prizemoney to racing and at the same time advertising themselves e.g. a law firm had it’s name boldly printed on the saddle cloth of each horse in the race that it sponsored. A win with a wine company when it discontinued its policy of sponsoring racing. Another win with a national equestrian supplier of horse gear, equipment, clothing, etc. Many sponsors are involved in racehorse ownership.

  2. Without taking away fron the horses mentioned because it truely just is hard to see this day after day…..if you look in the picture the lead horse with the white blaze (green cap) this is MEDALLICIOUS he lead for half the race like he normally does he runs he tries but his record is 68 5-4-12 he is 6 years old turns 7 in may…..this gelding has survived graci and rodriguez at penn and is now running at an even lower track mahoning valley (ohio) his highest speed figure lifetime is a 92 his highest from this year is 57…..just like jills redlection shamrock road halos and angels and the literal thousand others that are stuck in the same place….they just go person to person race to race until they cant physically cant this will happen all before he sees his prime hell he wont even have one …..

    • Billy, your words are so true yet a racing apologist states (in regards to TB’s being bought and sold by kill buyers), that “thoroughbreds are being more exploited off the track then [than] they were on the track.” So drugging them, injecting them, running them before they are skeletally developed, whipping them, keeping them stalled 23 hours a day, running them injured, getting “rid of them” to unscrupulous trainers via the claim process and then dumping them with kill buyers isn’t exploitative? Is this person delusional or is she just trying trying to convince herself, and others, that racing really isn’t so bad? SMH…

      I have said this hundreds of times before but it bears repeating again. Racing NEEDS slaughter. There are simply too many horses being produced and too few good homes. When trainers/owners want a horse “gone,” they normally want the horse moved quickly and sometimes you only have a couple of days to find an animal that will cost thousands of dollars to care for over the course of a year a good, forever home. It is unrealistic to believe that an OTTB will make a good 4-H horse for someone’s grandkids but I have heard that same, worn out story many times. Horses are handed off/sold willy nilly because stalls are valuable pieces of real estate at the track. A non-productive horse is a non-producing asset and must be moved in order for that stall to be filled with an asset that can produce revenue. Kill buyers become a conduit to facilitate that movement. Seems simple to me.

      • Delusional…….as far as slaughter im not sure how many horses are in the us total……but i honestly feel if racing went away so would horse slaughter they wouldnt have enough horses to continue…….question to all who is responsible for breeding more horses country wide then for any other thing sport,trail, competition…….yup thats right the racing industry and its not just tbs its the standardbreds the quarter horses the arabians…….racing and slaughter go hand in hand imo and this practice has gone on for centuries

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