This Is Horseracing

More details on some of the 2021 deceased I reported on…

Watch Your Step’s run in the 6th at Thistledown Aug 30 was, according to the chart, unremarkable (beyond, that is, finishing last). Turns out, says the Racing Commission, he had suffered a “displaced sesamoid fracture.” How long was he made to linger with this injury? The 5-year-old was not euthanized till Sep 6 – a full week later.

Yeahiknow finished last in a cheap ($5,000) claiming race at Belterra on Sep 3; the chartwriter said, “through after half, dropped far back” – 28 lengths, to be precise. The Commission picks it up from there: “The horse galloped out from the turf course to the main track. Upon entering main track, horse walked [about] 30 yards, collapsed and died – most likely a pulmonary bleed-out or cardiac event.” He was six years old; this was his 41st time under the whip.

Royal Briar was raced at Mountaineer on May 27, 2019. It was his 42nd “career” race. As the months went by, it appeared as if his track days were over. But no. On Sep 7 of last year – after being away from racing for over two years – the then-nine-year-old Royal was killed – “displaced P1 fracture” – training at Thistledown.

Midnight Whiskey had this note in the 5th at Penn Sep 10: “Midnight Whiskey suffered a catastrophic injury to his right front, [was] pulled up and was walked into the van.” Yes, that’s right, the catastrophically-injured (what the specific break was the state did not reveal) Midnight was made to walk into the van. And that’s not the first time this has happened at this wretched track.

Mox Nix broke down – “complete, compound fracture of cannon” – at Belterra Sep 28. He was eight years old. But here’s the thing: It had been almost five years since he was last raced. Almost five years. And he still had the same miscreant owner/trainer: Robert Bennett. What’s more, Bennett had raced Mox four times in 2016 (his only four races prior to last year); in those, Mox finished a combined 69+ lengths back.

This is horseracing.


  1. There is absolutely no reason to breed any more racehorses just so bettors jockeys and owners can benifit. And those track vets? Really you should be the horses first line defense. Most of these horses are babies. Broken legs, backs, fractured pelvis, colic and fractured skulls, shoulders. All trauma as well as bleeding out. Why is this even allowed. I treat my animals like this and I would be doing jail time. Inexcusable behavior from selfish self centered jerks.

    • Jennifer, intelligent,insightful post. You are absolutely correct. There is no good reason on god’s green earth …. as the old saying goes, to breed anymore. I have always maintained if these horses knew the horrific,crappy life they would be born into …. they would say “I’d rather not be born”.

  2. From the perspective of a retired 35-year Career R.N.:
    I honestly wonder if anyone would, [only within their own minds!!], maybe “switch” the poor animal in this photo from that of a horse TO, say, that of an overworked/emaciated/bull-hooked ELEPHANT in India, [i.e., who’s been made to walk, on blistering-hot pavement with tourists on his/her back, for decades], ~and/or~ if anyone would, [again, only within their own minds!!], maybe “switch” the poor animal in this photo from that of a horse TO, say, ………… one of their *O.W.N.* (personal companion animal) DOGS?

    We all know, well, that the folks who actively participate in Horseracing ………… have no soul; so, this little mental exercise would have absolutely NO impact on them, whatsoever.

    However, if the **LEGISLATORS** who ~approve/vote for/guarantee~ the $$$$subsidies which ‘prop up’ this (essentially, kill-for-sport) Horseracing Industry could, perhaps, VIEW a little “illustrative” photo-shopped/targeted VIDEO ………… in which the Above photo of the poor horse slowwwwly switches, [i.e., with the jockey, the other horse, the entire background, etc., + additionally, with all of the horse’s ~bits/straps/leads/hooks/other head-and-mouth hardware~ remaining IN any subsequent pictures!] ………… from the poor HORSE ………… >>> to, say, a stock photo of an Indian tourist ELEPHANT, including that same look of (the horse’s) sheer, unadulterated ~t.e.r.r.o.r.~ on his/her face ………… >>> to, say, stock photos of the (type of personal companion animal) DOGS of the legislators, including that same look of (the horse’s) sheer, unadulterated ~t.e.r.r.o.r.~ on their faces ………… would that then, maybe, simply “tease out” ………… even a tiny little bit of Legislative Empathy, at all, to finally ………… ***CUT.*** ***THE.*** ***MONEY***??!!

    ‘Just my #2 cents’ worth —[i.e., while my heart breaks💔, 24/7, at the inherent/profound cruelty of Horseracing]— you know!!

  3. State-sanctioned public bloodbath.
    Every single track above only exists because of the multimillion dollar subsidies that our elected politicians continue to authorize and provide.

  4. The DEPRAVED INDIFFERENCE to the fact that Horses are LIVING BEINGS — as we Humans are — is so beyond unconscionably cruel, I’m still looking for the right words — SHUT DOWN this vile, sadistic, immoral business — decent Societies would NEVER ALLOW this — where are our Legislators who reflect our values? — SHUT DOWN this evil racket.

    • mssm8822, I remember that time in 1977 when I saw a beautiful bay Thoroughbred gelding standing on the training track tacked up complete with a hood and the exercise rider was in the saddle on the horse’s back. The men who were standing on the outside of the training track near the outside rail were making comments about their uncertainty of the horse’s condition and so forth. The MAJOR sticking point at the time for me was that the horse could not hold his head on straight. His head was tilted to one side. I don’t have any idea how the horse got that way, but I was at a loss for words in my own head. The most descriptive phrase I can come up with is, “what the f*** is wrong with these people?” How could grown men expect a horse with a deformity to race????

      • WANDA — Allow me to give you a little background — Keep in mind, I “know” very little about Horses — I’ve frequented the races only on several occasions — But, like all Animals, I just love them — I want them to be happy, healthy & lead normal lives — watching, knowing there’s cruelty to Animals really irks me and burns me up — for these reasons I get involved to help them whenever I can //// Going back to your comment, I remember seeing a TB at the track up close years ago and the photo above is exactly what I saw on that day — the beautiful Horse above in the photo appears to be “on something” — each time I went to the Races, I always had anxious feelings — something I could not control — in brief, something, somewhere bothered me — the answer, of course, is in the Horse’s face — I remember thinking, “something’s not right here” — of course, time passed and I LEARNED of the Horrors — thanks to HW, I learned a lot — I still cannot believe “people” would engage in this hidden cruelty — over the decades, it has grown and grown to monstrous size and big money — I want people to QUIT this racket — give them a heads-up — give them time to find new paths to follow — I will continue to sign, write, comment, show up (when I can) until it is SHUT DOWN.

        • There are so many things that are not right about the forced confinement of horses for 23 hours a day and everything else about forcing horses to race! There are so many things wrong with it and about it that it overwhelms me! There is nothing about horseracing that is healthy or normal for the horses. In one way, it is sort of like cramming a square peg into a round hole, so to speak.
          The drugs these people administer to the horses to enhance performance are very harmful and deadly to the horses. The list of things wrong with horseracing never ends…

          • Wanda — exactly my point : there are so many reasons to SHUT DOWN Horseracing — the cruelties are beyond comprehension — yet, no one is paying attention — what will it take? — I’m continuing with informing the world about their evils — I will do this until this racket is SHUT DOWN.

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