Saratoga, this morning: “Fifth Avenue Red pulled up after breezing, vanned off with LF leg injury – euthanized.” Fifth Avenue was two years old and coming off his first race.
In a June 2020 statement, the New York Racing Association relayed the following: “The safety and welfare of horses…competing at NYRA tracks is our highest priority. That is why NYRA is committed to providing the safest possible environment for racing and training by adopting and implementing the best proven safety practices in consultation with independent experts, veterinarians, horsemen and regulators.”
In November, the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association boasted: “Working together with NYRA and the Gaming Commission, our trainers and NYTHA have created a [safety] standard that we feel should be emulated across the country.”
“Best proven safety practices”? “A standard that should be emulated across the country”? Fifth Avenue is the 62nd racehorse to perish at a NYS track this year (63rd if we include the “pony horse,” and former racehorse, Trucking Baron). Belmont leads with 30; Saratoga, which averages 15 per summer, and still with weeks to go, now stands at seven. They lie, folks, because they have to. Horseracing kills horses. Period.
The Saratoga Carnage (in progress)
Mister Bobby, May 13, training – “collapsed and died”
Strong Moment, Jul 16, racing – “catastrophic injury…euthanized on the course”
Pleasure Luck, Jul 18, racing (euthanized Jul 19) – “took a bad step”
Fattoria, Jul 19, training – “pelvic injury necessitating euthanasia”
Fiya, Jul 31, training – “injury to RH leg…euthanized”
Butter Lou, Aug 5, racing – “injured, vanned off, euthanized”
Fifth Avenue Red, Aug 7, training – “pulled up, vanned off, euthanized”