Falling Horses as Entertainment

More steeplechase madness, from the Stewards’ Reports:

At the “Middleburg Spring Races” in Virginia April 23, Love of the Bay “fell at the 13th fence” in race 3; Elusive Soul “fell after hitting the top of the fence” in race 6; Pincer Movement “pulled up lame before the last fence” in race 8.

At the “Foxfield Races” in Virginia April 30, Eve’s City “twisted badly over the top of the fence” in race 2; Pony Up “fell over the fifth fence” in race 3; Mighty Mark “was pulled up lame after the fifth fence and vanned off” in race 5. With this last one, the stewards note, trainer Katherine Neilson “was officially reprimanded for her hesitant reaction to directions of the Course Vet…to load Mighty Mark onto the ambulance.”


  1. If there is a petition to get steeplechase and/or jumps racing banned in the United States, I will sign it. This CRUEL practice must be stopped!!!!! I’ve never heard of a horse not falling in steeplechase/jumps racing. There is always at least one horse go down, but usually multiple horses fall. Steeplechase racing is so unnecessary and insanely INHUMANE to the horses.

      • J Brooks, from what I have read, steeplechase or jumps racing and Quarter Horse racing were acceptable in the 13 colonies, but for a time Thoroughbreds racing on the flat was unacceptable up until, I don’t exactly know when. I was surprised to read that flat track racing for Thoroughbreds was ever not acceptable in the early colonial times. It may have had something to do with the gambling aspect.

  2. The picture Patrick put on twitter shows how absolutely horrifying jumps are for horses, two of the horses land on the TOP of their beautiful heads,how sickly EVIL is that. People need to get a life …. rather than abusing horses for entertainment. SICK

    • It’s a no-brainer that some horses will have a mishap even in local horse shows such as saddle club and 4-H shows where they sometimes have English equitation (in addition to the Western riding events, equitation and pleasure) and jumping 2.5 foot to 3 foot high jumps in an arena on flat ground. When you see a teenage girl riding around the arena and the horse somehow doesn’t clear the jump at a much slower speed than racing, you know it’s a high risk activity. To take it to the extreme as they do in steeplechase & jumps RACING, it’s insane.

      • It’s foolish and it shows are willing a horse. Is to work for us even when they are going against their own common sense. I consider it overdriving and stupid.

        Sent from my iPhone


        • I agree with you, Jennifer! It is foolish and stupid, plus it’s evil to demand that a horse give their all for racing. It’s evil to take advantage of the vulnerability of the horses. Many of the horses are more than willing to do anything their rider asks of them. It’s evil to take unfair advantage of this fact which leads to injuries and death to the horses.

          • The comment was made somewhere that we have dominion over the creatures. If you believe that then God comes into play. Animals were put here to assist us and keep us company. I fell into the same line of thought some of these abusers do when I was younger. But when you no better you do better. Seeing horses suffering on a slaughter truck or any creature headed to where they don’t want to is an eye opener. Watching a jockey years ago beat a horse with a broken pelvis behind some bushes so a bunch of drunks wouldn’t see where there greed for cash has ruined a good horse broke me. We have got worse over the years. Our humanity is stuck with its head in the ground. We can and should do better. I remember reading about the great Snowman being saved off a slaughter truck. His owner never directed that plow horse but just pointed him at a fence. I am sure I have written way to much and chAlk to up to my age. But I have too ask how many horses had much More potential and we’re ruined. Horses used to live into their thirties and even continue working. We put abusers on these beautiful animals backs and expect them to do the impossible. If you must use horses in these “sporting” ways be professional and handle them in a kindly manner. They will work just as well and perhaps better if not battered into it.

            Sent from my iPhone


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