Horse Killed at Aqueduct, But Industry Celebrates Expertise of Jockey

The end for a horse named Tommy T, yesterday, Aqueduct: “placed to a brisk hand ride springing from the gate, bobbled shortly afterwards, was switched to a rating hold and allowed to ease back, departed the backstretch from between opponents, suffered a fatal injury to the left front nearing the seven-sixteenths pole, was expertly pulled up before coming to the next station, then after being examined by the track veterinarian, was euthanized” (Equibase).

Killed – for gambling – but we should be grateful for the “expert” horsemanship of the (complicit) jockey. They’re playing us for fools, folks.


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  1. Yep, such great talent from the jockey. Even after “bobbling” and “easing back”, probably because the horse was already not right, he raced the horse on, ultimately causing his death. But, he’s lauded for expertly pulling up the horse he drove on til he broke. And that poor horse ran on only 3 legs before he “got to the next station”. Guess being a killer is to be celebrated.

    • Exactly….what gives here, why not pull the horse up right away and live to race another day? Makes no sense yet i see this regularly. So much for that extra 2 lbs weather related safety initiative.

      • They won’t pull him up right away because the other jockeys and horses wouldnt have time to react. Kill one to save more.

  2. The whole industry needs to be shut down. Racing and killing horses is not entertainment for me. It is cruel. A beautiful animal was killed and nobody cares? He lost his life. Everything living being wants to live. Of course, his life was “racing”. Not a good life.

  3. Barbara, “bad step” is a myth that the industry places blame on (for racehorses suffering injuries) all the time. Necropsies have proven that in the final catastrophic injury, “micro-fractures” (and worse) were present in the dead horse’s limb(s).

  4. I don’t ever watch any kind of racing. This keeps going on with no one paying the consequences except for the poor innocent horse. This makes me totally sick and someone better wake up and put a stop to this cruelty. Put this idoit in jail and stop the gambling. Money is the root of evil.

    • Franceska — please note — depraved, evil monsters, who masquerade as “normal” human beings, are the root of all evil — do not blame money — someone MUST stop them — WHO? — the paying customers!

  5. All horses that are entered in every race should be examined before race for soundness blood pressure temp to see if he sound to run they should do it half hour before each race to prevent injury u dont know if horse has eart prblems or reaction for meds given or lasix given

    • Barbara, all racehorses are examined at least 4 hours before a race.
      However, this doesn’t resolve or prevent breakdowns from occurring as the facts show.
      The reason for this in one word is DOPE.
      There are, in most racing jurisdictions, about 30 drugs allowed in a racehorse’s system before and during a race.
      Many of these drugs are pain killers with varying degrees of potency.
      So a trainer, teamed up with a vet, knows how to combine these drugs to mask issues that even a seasoned vet can’t see.
      Moreover, many trainers learn the “tricks of the trade,” including soaking a racehorses’s legs in an ice bucket before the vet comes to temporarily relieve heat in the leg to pass the exam.
      The “caring” trainer image that the industry projects is bearing false witness to what is actually going on.
      The single most effective way to greatly reduce breakdowns, either catastrophic or career-ending, is for the pre-race vets to have access to the doping/vet records leading up to the race.
      The vet who conducts the pre-race exam is NOT the same vet who regularly administers drugs to racehorses.
      The private vet hired by the trainer, paid for by the owner is the vet who really knows the horse, knows the issues, administers the dope, and keeps these records secret.
      The pre-race vet who conducts the exam has no clue as to what’s going on with the horse other than a 10 minute visual exam. – they are completely separate entities.
      The disconnection is deliberate and so is the non-transparency of doping records to keep racehorses running, filling races, and subsequently filling the wagering coffers.
      They send them out to die – more or less, but they get wagering money as soon as they leave the gate so if a racehorse dies during the race they’ve still made their money – mainly the HBPA who controls most of the wagering profits on all racetracks in North America.
      Most high level racehorses (about 10%) have equine insurance policies in place so they even get their money if they die during training hours or during a race.
      In essence, dying is just another facet of this business – dying is inherent in horse racing, and there are no incentives to reduce it because it would affect their bottom line.
      This is the wonderful world of horse racing.

      • Gina – at the tracks where my horses raced, and this was in multiple different states, the only “exam” the vet did was watching the horses walk in the saddling paddock then watching them move out in the post parade. There were horses running that people knew were crippled, had some DNFs in their past, and were still allowed to run. Sometimes the jockey scratched them, but I never, ever, saw a vet scratch them for unsoundness, unless they ran off in the post parade or hurt themselves in the gate. Sometimes they would flag them after the race, when they jogged back lame, but even that wasn’t always a guarantee. They are employed by the respective states racing commissions, so they have a vested interest in keeping as many horses running as possible, even if they are a recipe for disaster.

      • Gina, in our state there is NO exam 4 hours before a horse races! The only exam is the quick look at in the saddling paddock and the look passing by at the gate by the outrider.We agree all medical records should be made available to anyone interested! Prospective claimers of horses, the betting public as well. We have a Seattle Slew line mare on our farm that is now going on 23 years old who we had to actually pickup her papers at the track where her old trainer was located at at our state capitol track which is long gone.The filly at the time was located 50 miles away at a farm 1/2 starved and at least 250# under weight! We found her through an agricultural weekly paper. The farm manger was decent enough to tell us that the owners thought she had the beginnings of a carpal slab fracture on her left fore leg and was to be sold as a broodmare prospect only and needed 3 months stall rest.Our farm manager offered several hundred $ less due to her low weight condition.She accepted! When we arrived with our old 1/4 horse type Hale trailer being pulled by our 1984 S10 long bed P/U she was very dubious as to the tall, large filly going into our trailer. We talked to the filly and calmed her down.Using just a rope around her neck, had her enter our trailer easily. We hauled her gently and when she arrived and saw our good grass fields we could not leave her in our barn as she would not accept that! We took a chance and turned her out in our main field where she showed good sense and did not run for many weeks! After several years we had a X-ray done on BOTH forelegs as we did not know which one had the beginnings of the slab fracture. Our private vet said there was NO sign of a fracture ever having been begun. Later at the track when we were still an active participant galloping horses in the mornings, the trainer we were galloping for repeatedly kept asking if we were the ones handling the filly and of course said yes. We said that occasionally we even rode her around the farm too.He looked completely shocked and informed us that the filly we had, had only won one race at one of our states crummy bull ring tracks.Before that race she had reared up and savaged the groom and trainer before the race and sent them to the emergency room and that it took several strong horsemen to pull her off of them. The jockey being a little crazy like most of them, went on to ride her in the race where she won! He said he knew of this as he was one of the horsemen that assisted with the trainer of records assistance.That older mare still is living on our farm even now! She has NEVER been lame a day in her life here.After seeing this same trainer who we were galloping for, almost kill a good rider friend of ours in a race due to the ILLEGAL use of shock wave therapy everyday on a mare up to and including the day she last raced breaking both her front legs, WE QUIT!! Of course after our friends severe injury we galloped every horse in that trainers barn as no other riders would. Yes we know that was STUPID of us! At a natural 120# we were born to ride. As we were able to maintain that weight without dieting or not eating anything we wanted. We hated giving up on the galloping of horses after finally receiving a LEGAL license MANY years after becoming involved starting in 1977. We FINALLY were legally licensed in 2004! We still think we were one of the oldest licensed exercise riders in our state first provided a license. We don`t think the license issuers realized our age at the time as we still to this day have no grey hair and look much younger than our 63!

      • I stand corrected.
        All states apply different rules.
        The tracks that I raced on in Ontario, Canada, Kentucky, Maryland, and California all have the type of exam that I describe.
        I think that this exam is minimal at best, but didn’t realize that at other tracks they just look at them in the saddling paddock – that stinks.
        Another point I was trying to make is that if a racehorse is scratched then it has to be very bad, so obviously lame because even the ones that limp I’ve seen them pass especially if it’s a favorite.
        They all have a vested interest in getting the racehorses into the gate, and that’s why there are only 2 categories of apologists: 1. the actual racehorse abusers and/or 2. the enablers of the abuse.
        Peggy, there are plenty of racehorses running with DNF in their PP’s as you point out and most who breakdown have at least 1 DNF on record.

  6. These people would bet on a whack a mole contest if they could ensure enough moles were available for slaughter.

  7. Horses are beautiful animals and should be treated as such. Horse racing is a way for people to get rich (or go bankrupt). In any event it takes advantage of horses and needs to be outlawed!

  8. So many horses are lame to begin with just as they keep running them every week especially cheap claimers parx and penn run same horses every week look at hoof hoof. aways record she runs ev.ery

  9. Week also divine kitten at penn these horses must be sore running every week also ventura highway runs with his head down shows u he dont want to run another girlies dream went to charlestown some other parx horses still a maiden punta de punta runs still a maiden how stupid one horse juat retired to turning for home wild pantera always 20 lengths behind when she was racing

    • I reviewed the PP’s of all the horses listed that you provided.
      It’s all bad, but the one that bothers me the most is WILD PANTERA.
      This 9 y.o. mare ran her fanny off in her younger years making over $230,000.
      Then she was dumped into the claiming ranks when she stopped performing.
      A parasite goes onto their next victim when their current victim can’t provide what they need.
      She has been finishing last or in the bottoms by 20+ lengths – she was done a long time ago.
      It’s been 2 years since she won a race and has been abused since then and for most of her life.
      Do these people have even one iota of moral conscious?
      Apparently not because this is horse racing.
      They just keep feeding off of her until she can’t give anymore.
      Not one of these parasites, not one, has done right by this horse and give her a good home – this is clearly one example of many that shows just how vile these parasites are.
      She’s on the verge of dropping dead in the dirt and not one these people give a damn.

  10. This is beyond depravedly indifferent, it’s downright immoral — we MUST SHUT DOWN this horrific racket — how long before consumers see the light.

  11. Also u see a jockey change just before a race charlestown most recent jockey feels horse nit right so they dont want ti ride him sometimes they get another rider sometimes they scratch him also late scratches i saw at aqu horses loding in gate they post it in small letters when race is about to go off u can hardly see it

  12. You notice at parx tues 1st race had 5 yr old maidens running look at their revords caroles rainbow unshackled the other 5 yr old won the race deep canyon

  13. At least 21 horses have died at Santa Anita
    Racetrack in California. Horrible. And they are “looking at track surface”. Why don’t they look at the drugs they give these horses? Look at the cruelty, and you’ll find the answers.

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