Leaving Welts (Plural) on the Horse? No Biggie.

A ruling yesterday from the Minnesota Racing Commission: “Dean Magee was the driver of The Royal Queen in race 4 on 8/15/21; a welt was discovered when The Royal Queen arrived in the test barn after race.” The punishment? “This is Mr. Magee’s first whipping violation at Running Aces in 2021 [italics added]. Mr. Magee is issued a $100 fine and a one-day driving suspension.”

And more at RA: “James Jungquist was the driver of Major Mac in the 3rd race on 8/10/21. Welts [plural] were seen on Major Mac when the horse arrived in the test barn for post-race testing.” This is Mr. Jungquist 2nd whip violation at Running Aces in 2021 [italics added]. Penalty is $200 fine and one-day driving suspension.”

Bernard Demars was the driver of Parklane Jet in the 6th race on 8/10/21. Welts [plural] were seen on Parklane Jet when the horse arrived in the test barn for post-race testing. This is Mr. Demars 2nd whip violation at Running Aces in 2021 [italics added]. Penalty is a two-day driving suspension.”

And finally, from Indiana: “While driving PONDA HAWK in race 9 on 8/8/21, [Michael] Oosting did leave welts [plural] while whipping in the stretch. The penalty [$200] was reduced because Mr. Oosting was within the IHRC whipping rules and guidelines.” You simply can’t make this stuff up. By the way, Oosting, according to the Chicago Tribune, “was booked on a domestic battery charge” back in 2011. Great guy all around.

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  1. What? If it is within the whipping rules (what rules?) AND guidelines to leave welts, why do they even bother to fine or suspend any horse-abusing driver…? I’m sure I missed something here, but horses will continue to be whipped. Exactly what are the IHRC Rules and Guidelines??? Did money change hands under the table…? What happened here in the case of Michael Oosting leaving multiple welts on the horse named PONDA HAWK and having his fine reduced…? Is there a shortage of horse-abusers in harness racing? This despicable industry is disgusting.

  2. The rules are extensive. I watched the replays and they all committed violations. The stewards must be sleeping during the races. What is IHRC?

  3. So very sad to read about abuse of Standardbreds–the best breed of horse on the planet, in my opinion. One of my rescues is an off-the-track Standardbred (pacer) who was dumped & snagged by the Amish who run the crap out of Standardbreds on pavement, until they injure them too badly to work. Then they sell them to slaughter. Thankfully, a rescue nabbed my boy before the Amish could sell him to slaughter. Kindest, best-minded horse I’ve ever been around. Never had a saddle on his back, took to it right away & has always been the safest ride. If you need a horse (and who doesn’t?) adopt a Standardbred.

    • LOL at “and who doesn’t (need a horse)?”
      I know you were being facetious, of course; nobody “needs” horses. Those of us who have them in our lives — and truly love and care for them — do so for decades, and at enormous expense and effort. Not so for those in racing. Their commitment to their animals’ lives ends when their “investment” stops earning money for them. (Especially with thoroughbreds. They’re usually past their expiration date before their fifth birthday. Want to adopt an OTTB? Neither does anybody else.) All the usual, crippling unsoundness caused by their short window of time on the track means they’re extremely unlikely to get that elusive “forever home” the industry is suddenly pretending to try and locate.

      So, yeah, the Amish are absolutely horrible to their horses. But so is EVERYONE involved in this whole sick game of horse racing: First, for inflicting the cruelty of track life itself on equines. Then, for their immediate disposal of NEARLY ALL of their “beloved athletes” in order to replicate the exact same cruelty on thousands of new babies each and every year.

      • Kelly, I would adopt an OTTB in a heartbeat, if I had the bank account to support having a beautiful (but most likely crippled) pasture pet. Real estate is one of the most expensive parts of horse ownership and responsibllty, plus hay and the multitude of other expenses that go with keeping horses healthy and safe.

  4. Just take the whips out of horse racing then there won’t be any welts showing up on the horses. I’ve seen how hard race horses are whipped it looks like the jockey’s can’t stop from beating them even though the horses are winning, then the jockey is praised for the win. I know jockeys have a purpose but whips do not!

    • In harness racing, they are called drivers rather than jockeys. I agree that horses should not be whipped, but the use of whips on any breed of racehorse whether it is Standardbreds, Thoroughbreds, Quarter Horses, Arabians, Appaloosas, Paint Horses or Akhal-Tekes is only one part of the total cruelty to racehorses. Every aspect of HORSERACING is Animal Cruelty!!! Ban Horseracing!!!

    • As far as I’m concerned jockeys serve no more purpose than any other habitual animal abuser. The only difference is they are protected under the misnomer of “sport”.

      • Yes, there are so many things that are WRONG in HORSERACING that even calling it a sport is WRONG! The Kings started this ABUSE of horses centuries ago. It’s up to the “will of the people” to stop the INHUMANE TREATMENT of HORSES FOR RACING AND WAGERS!!!! Ban Horseracing!

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