In the 6th at Penn last night, Honorable Service fell in the stretch and was “vanned off.” Again, while I won’t have a definitive till my FOIA, this – “fell/vanned” – almost always translates to dead. And if so, this one is particularly horrible, as the obscenely-named Honorable Service is (was) just seven years old but being raced for the 82nd time. In fact, this was his 19th time under the whip – and yes, he was being beaten right up to the fall yesterday – this year.
Also yesterday, there were two horses ambulanced away after “winning” their races. After raking in a cool $20,000 for her people in the 8th at Mahoning, L C Zero “pulled up bad and was vanned off.” She is (was) three years old. In the 7th at Evangeline, the note was even more abhorrent: “Jessbye Train away super, dominated, vanned off.” Jessbye is (was) four. If dead, this will really sting for owner Rosendo Valdez and trainer Rosendo Valdez Jr: Including yesterday’s, Jessbye had “won” seven straight races. That said, a little over a year ago he was “vanned off” at this same track.
This is horseracing.