16 “Vanned Off” in One Day – At Least Two, Payntermaniac and Imperial Legacy, Dead

By my count, no fewer than 16 racehorses were “vanned off” American tracks yesterday. That is, 16 horses required an ambulance to get off the course – in one day. While it is highly probable that several are dead, at present I can confirm two:

In just her 2nd time under the whip, 2-year-old Payntermaniac was killed in the “Debutante Stakes” at Churchill Downs. Her trainer, John Ennis, spewed this on Twitter: “Unfortunately with a heavy heart today we lost payntermaniac, a very fast filly who never got to show her abilities!” Coming, as it is, from one of the people responsible for the death, the exclamation point is nothing less than Mr. Ennis twisting the knife in Payntermaniac’s shattered knee. How do you sleep at night? And yet, on Twitter there are folks saying “condolences to the connections.” Vile.

Imperial Legacy, three, also being raced for just the 2nd time, went down in the 5th at Los Alamitos. The Equibase writer said, “took a bad step, was pulled up in distress.”

How can anyone who considers himself or herself a good, moral person continue to defend this? Wake up, America.


Leave a Comment

  1. I have always sort of snickered when I read or hear the word “connections” relating to the horse whose effort is used to financially support huge expanses of our economy.

    Think about it. It really is a word of obfuscation isn’t it?

  2. Let us keep vocal about heat and other weather conditions. I know here in the Northeast it is very hot. Thank God the Saratoga flat track isn’t running yet. They run those poor horses no matter what—- all for the money. All about $$$$. These horses are so drugged, they cannot feel the pain and damage in their legs and body. A horse will slow herself/himself down—- they are sensitive and smart. When they are drugged and under the whip, that natural ability is gone.

    • Absolutely.
      I don’t watch or support horse racing, but I only watched it to see if they were going to be brutal enough to run racehorses at Woodbine Racetrack in Ontario, Canada in extreme heat with warnings.
      On Saturday the heat was 95 F, but with the humidity factor it was more like 105 F – either unacceptable to run these racehorses and force them to exert themselves.
      It was disgusting and shameful that they were actually beating/whipping these racehorses, in the stretch, while they were so obviously struggling in this heat – heartless bastards.
      Absolute animal cruelty, and inhumane treatment of an animal in this case racehorses.
      Furthermore, DIXIE MOON a multiple stake filly appeared to be over heating in the paddock prior to running in the Queen’s Plate.
      The trainer, Catharine Day-Phillips, noticed something and immediately started watering her down, and it didn’t seem to be alleviating her distress.
      The track vet, which is nothing more than a tool of the racetrack, didn’t even check her out so they ran her.
      She struggled through the entire race, and was “eased-up” in the stretch with the cameras diverting away from what happened next – status unknown although they indicated that she walked-off.
      This blatant animal cruelty playing out in Toronto Ontario in the 21st century – unacceptable.
      This business has got to go!

      • My heart breaks for Dixie Moon and all of the others made to COMPETE for the pocketbooks of their owners, trainers…and every other industry-employed who make money from these poor horses’ labors. I have no adequate words for the disgust I feel for every single last one of them…..

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