“Nervous Filly” Killed at Churchill

This is how the chartwriter described Tormenta’s run in the 1st at Churchill September 27: “tracked the pace early on, was off the rail into the lane, was pulled up in distress down the lane and vanned off after the race.” We now know (Racing Commission) she was “vanned” to her death; the cause of her “distress”: “displaced condylar fracture and sesamoid fractures [with] severe soft tissue damage.” The 3-year-old, says her trainer, “was quite a nervous filly.” Which brings me to a final note from the necropsy. This “nervous filly” – a babe, really – also suffered from “extensive ulceration of the stomach.” (Actually, studies show up to 95% of all racehorses suffer from ulcers.) A brief, mean existence; a painful, terrifying end. This is horseracing.

14 Comments

  1. There is proof and research to back it up that bone fractures suffered during racing and training are due to lack of skeletal conditioning. Strong bone is built from years of proper training and conditioning. It is the last piece of the puzzle to be put in place. Racing is a money game and the earlier and more times a horse can be run is what the sport of TB racing is geared for. Thoroughbreds will continue to be run like they are machines hell be damned for what a horse needs-a mature skeleton which equals time and patience. Oh, and never mind the ones that can’t take the wear and tear of track life, they are mostly sold for slaughter and die a horrid death in Mexico-Canada-China. We are horrible stewards of these magnificent animals.

    • Thank you for your informative comment, jfigg. It is confirmation of what I heard, on a video, said by an equine veterinarian speaking to a NYS racing commission hearing. The general public doesn’t know these things.

  2. The entire horse racing business is geared up for the Kentucky Derby.
    Only 3 y.o’s run in the Derby so high earnings must be made in their 2 y.o year.
    Since there will never be changes to the Derby than this recipe for abuse will go unabated.
    Furthermore, economics over the well-being of the racehorses are their directives and racehorses like TORMENTA pays the prices – they always do.
    Most all horse races are 2 minutes and may not have the prestige of the Derby, but a whole lot of suffering and dying leading up to the 2 minutes is required to churn billion dollar profits for track and wagering companies.
    There are no “strong bones” and long term conditioning (refer to jfigg comment) that will prevent the suffering and dying required to keep this vile business going.
    The slaughterhouse is a necessary part of their equation as well since there are not enough homes (never has been or will be) for their unwanted racehorse mess.
    To this day, the horse racing industry has no mandatory financial contributions in place for aftercare knowing that this will result in at least 20,000 racehorses dying on the slaughterhouse floor every year.
    Horse racing only feeds the public what they want them to know, but it’s the racehorses dying on the tracks that are the truth conveyors.

    • Gina, Thank you. I will take the liberty of posting your knowledgeable comment on my Facebook page.

    • Agree, Gina. All the public continues to know about the TB industry is wrapped around the Kentucky Derby and Breeders Cup. They see magnificent horse farms and beautiful fit and shiny horses. The other 99% of the truths of horse racing remain hidden. If that 99% was exposed sadly horse racing would still be alive and well. The sport is all about money and the prestige of owning a Grade 1 winner. Fame is fleeting and many a graded stakes winner has ended up on the slaughter house floor.

      • The public also thinks these broken legs can be fixed and after the race go home to a warm cuddly environment. People see the Derby Day as the rich and famous loving a nd enjoying this FAB event with history being made. I said yesterday, we have to bypass people we have been begging for an end and appeal to a silent majority .

  3. As a trainer, he had to say that this 3-year-old filly, TORMENTA, was quite nervous. He couldn’t possibly have said what kind of person he was/is for willfully participating in her suffering and pain.
    He couldn’t possibly have said what a miserable person it takes to rely on the brutal exploitation of immature, too young, colts and fillies to have some money in his bank account, his wallet, his pocket, his plastic cards.

  4. Horses are very much a product of their environment and handling. I can pretty much guarantee this filly was created, not born this way.

  5. Could it possibly be “extensive ulceration of the stomach” had any influence on her nervousness ?!!!
    Gastric ulcers cause constant pain. A 3yr. old with that much ulcer disease being forced to train and race until she broke down is pure unadulterated abuse. Cruel.
    And then the cretin posing as a trainer says “she was quite a nervous filly”. Really!! Did he ever wonder why?!
    The unfortunate filly was neglected and suffered for all of her short life.
    Death was her only escape.
    This is what racing does to its athletes.

    That will not change regardless of The Horseracing Integrity And Safety Act and the yet to be instated Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority.
    The ONLY fix for racing is to shut it down.

    • Imagine being locked up in a stall 23 hours a day and then, when your dominant slavemaster comes to let you out for about an hour, you are subject to being whipped and forced to run and whipped until all you can feel is pain; pain from the running and pain from the whipping. As if that isn’t bad enough, somewhat ironically, the pain meds to mask the pain of injured bones and joints and soreness in muscles, tendons and ligaments cause you more pain in the form of ulcers. Nothing but abuse for a young filly deprived of a normal life.

      • What humans do….the pure F’n evil they inflict. Why can’t they just leave animals the hell alone! People ACTUALLY suck.

  6. If I had a stomach full of ulcers, and very probably a sore leg as well, I’d act nervous too. This horse was probably force fed NSAIDS from day one of training. Trainers may insist these horses are physically grown enough to be trained and raced at 2 and 3, but I think they know, and aren’t going to admit, that these horses are not mature enough to be worked. Little wonder they are given NSAIDS on a regular basis. Trainers know they are sore, simply because the horses are either too young to be trained and raced, and as a result are in pain as an immature body is stressed and strained, repeatedly. In a few years, trainers know, these horses now have either/or chronic injuries or arthritis, and give them NSAIDS for that reason.
    What are we told, when taking our Advil? Take it with food! Why? Because Advil is an NSAID and as such, is so hard on the stomach, that without the cushion of a meal, will cause ulcers if you take enough of it.
    Now, look how a racehorse’s digestive system is totally disrupted. They are rarely allowed to graze freely, in a pasture. Instead, they spend up to 23 hours a day in a stall. That stall, no matter how big, does not let a horse move about, while eating. They are fed on their caretakers’ schedule, not their bodies’. Fed twice a day, instead of grazing many hours a day. Boxed in a stall all day, instead of being free to move about a pasture, their walking as they graze aiding the abdominal muscles in digestion. Ulcers from being fed NSAIDS, on an empty stomach.
    Is it any wonder, this fully was acting nervous? If she hadn’t broken down, she was probably ripe for a colic attack-which also kills many racehorses.
    Well, Merry Christmas.

    • TORMENTA is listed on Equibase as a “Keeneland Grad” which says a lot about why she was not raced as a two-year-old and WHY she had so many ULCERS at the age of THREE YEARS. It stands to reason that she was exploited, so abusively, at such a young age that she had multiple “conditions” going on inside her body. The racing participants that put yearling and two-year-old Thoroughbred colts and fillies through this additional HELL, this additional “meat-grinder” of being prepped through Keeneland are just the worst, most greedy people in the horseracing industry. I have nothing good to say about KEENELAND.

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