Two Opening Day Kills at Belmont; Another Death at Saratoga

Belmont, after grabbing the NYRA baton from Saratoga, opened yesterday – with a kill. In the 3rd race, Passporttovictory, says Equibase, took some “bad steps” and was “vanned off”; the Gaming Commission confirms the 5-year-old mare dead. But there’s more. Earlier in the Belmont day, Royal Inheritance “collapsed and died while training” – she, too, was but five years old. This makes 24 dead horses at Belmont Park on the year – with almost four full months to go.

Meanwhile, yet another dead horse at Saratoga. Sister Beauty, two, broke down training August 31 – officially, “ambulanced to Rood & Riddle; inoperable fracture – euthanized due to poor prognosis.” That’s 14 dead for the “oldest sports venue in the nation” – right at its historical average. For all three NYRA tracks (including Aqueduct), 42 dead horses thus far in 2019. Juxtapose that with this from NYRA spokesman Patrick McKenna in the Times Union Saratoga recap:

“Safety at all levels is our highest priority. NYRA has a broad-based safety program and employs industry-best equine safety practices at all of our racetracks. These include measures such as the daily inspection and scientific analysis of all racing and training surfaces; examinations of equine athletes who must be cleared by NYRA veterinarians to race and a variety of capital improvements designed to enhance safety.”

Yet again, I implore the NY media to become more cynical. This is a rich, old industry well-schooled in the art of propaganda. But please, just follow the facts: “Demonstrably safer” is a lie, and horses will continue to die, guaranteed.

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  1. I watched the race, saw the horse drop, missed any discussion by tvg2 announcer due to phone call. It took me until today to find out what happened to this horse, 9/7/19. Been googling the episode.
    They have not updated the horse’s profile. No honor given in light of all the $$ this horse brought home. Not transparent at all.
    Kinda kills the sport for me.

    • Tvg rarely lets the viewers know the outcome. They say we will follow up on the incident as we get updates.theywill say the jockey is on his feet. Then go on to the handicapping numbers and the next race.

  2. The FACTS again and again repeat themselves.
    The majority of racehorses dropping dead are almost always in the legal care, custody, and control of trainers who have a long record of racehorses dying like Gary Contessa who trained the now dead SISTER BEAUTY She was not a performer so a useless commodity, disposal gambling chip that ends up dead.
    ROYAL INHERITANCE made her original owner over $200,000 then faded (most likely due to injuries that could no longer be masked with dope) so it was time to dump her.
    Another predictable pattern implemented by owner/trainers again and again.
    Moreover, when they do the dumping they are well aware that their racehorse is sick/sore/tired and they ensure that the medical doping/vet records don’t follow them which in turn ensures their suffering.
    Yes, the folks who claim to love them like “family members” quickly dumps them when they can no longer bring home the money.
    PASSPORTTOVICTORY – same pattern. Makes the original owner, Stuart Grant, over $200,000, stops performing at upper levels and gets dumped into the claiming ranks continually changing hands until multiple racehorse killer Jeremiah Englehart finishes her off.
    Three beautiful mares reduced to dead carcasses either in the dirt, or off the track now part of the carnage.
    Their empty words are mere public wallpaper because the facts speak for themselves.
    Not hyperbole – FACTS.
    How much longer is our society going to permit this bloodbath to continue?

    • Money is the root of all evil.Nobody in this pure evil animal abuse gambling gig cares at all about the pain and suffering of these innocent beautiful gentle Godly Souls. I have cried so many tears for these beautiful Angels, I seriously cannot take it anymore.Horses suffering for these pure evil greedy unfeeling,uncaring humans,how can these people live with themselves? It’s too much for ME to cope with,I want to save all these Angels,and I can’t and I’m afraid I’m going to have a nervous breakdown,because these people in horse racing are the Evilest of the evil. God,please look over the horses,save them.

  3. 2017,two yr. old Ciaran adorable diminutive jet black,he dies training on the Belmont track, fast forward 2019,his brother Go big or Go home breaksdown in a race at Saratoga. Two brothers die because of NY racing. What can you say…but,PURE EVIL. I’m to the point I despise these humans in this killing Torture machine.Oh,but they “love them like family” , give me a F’n break! These people should rot in HELL. A 2yr old shouldn’t be Training!

  4. This is unconscionable cruelty and must be stopped. Bonnie’s’ story above about the two brother’s is heartbreaking!!! There is no excuse for this, and I completely concur with Bonnie’s comments on, “Oh, but they “love them like family”…Yes, I agree that these people should rot in hell!

  5. They want to close down racetracks due to horse deathes. But have they though ahead, about what happens to the horses when no longer needed. Some will be saved for shows and differnt jobs. The rest will be slaughtered by the thousands. More slaughter house will open. So are we really saving them!

    • Horseracing will not suddenly come to a close overnight. It will contract – or to be more precise, continue to contract: I have documented a net loss of 34 racetracks in the U.S. just since 2000. The Jockey Club’s annual “foal crop” – the number of baby Thoroughbreds being registered each year – is roughly half what it was in 1990. All other relevant metrics are also down – racedays, races, “field sizes,” etc. See, contraction. Now, as to your question of where those horses who are left will go, I turn it back on you – where, pray tell, do they go now? The vast majority – 12,000-15,000 annually – of “retired” racehorses are brutally and violently slaughtered at the end of their productivity. Yes, that’s right, this multi-billion dollar industry, littered with loads of obscenely wealthy people, is sending most of its erstwhile “family members” to the abattoirs to be shackled, slashed, bled-out, and butchered. So you see, your question is grossly misdirected.

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