What Happens When a Driver Uses the Whip in a “Brutal and Excessive Manner”?

A ruling over the weekend by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission:

“Charles Conrad used the whip in a brutal and excessive manner while driving ‘Sandcastle’ in the 2nd race on May 28 at Oak Grove, causing a cut inside the stifle.”

For using the whip “in a brutal and excessive manner” (and causing physical damage), Mr. Conrad was suspended for five days and fined $500. Justice served? Sandcastle, by the way, is just two years old. In another by the way – and, surprise, surprise – this is not Charlie’s first offense (of course it is our position that every time he gets in the sulky abuse ensues). In addition to being cited in Kentucky before, he was also “caught” in Indiana, and surely plenty of other jurisdictions. Serial abuser, defined.

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  1. I believe that horseracing should be totally ended as it leads too many horses being hurt, abused, and killed. I think the owners of the horses should be more loyal to them and value them as family members instead of only using them to make money.

    • Jan, I think it is so ironic that the people in the horseracing industry call their equine victims “family members” after they committed equicide on their “family members” but, at the same time, these people say that their racehorses are not pets. It’s a cold-hearted killing business. The majority of the horses exploited for racing by these pseudo-horsemen will be sent out to die at racetracks and slaughterhouses — this is the business. Purse money and wagering revenue is what makes it a so-called “game” or “sport” but it is highly offensive to call this Animal Cruelty — abusing horses & killing horses — a sport.

  2. Dont know if you caught it, but Victor Espinoza was fined $1500 for whipping violations at Santa Anita, perhaps in March 2022, along with several other jockeys. More recently a horse trained by Richard Baltis died on the track, the next day the stewards scratched one of his horses at the gate, and suspended him pending an investigation.

    • James Mitchell, thank you for your post.
      Victor Espinoza struck the 3 year old AMERICAN PHARAOH about 32 times in the Kentucky Derby (2015 I think it was) in about 37 seconds. Abhorrent animal abuse that was on the world stage on that occasion and people were outraged from all over the world. Much publicity and yet he was not penalised.
      He also viciously whipped the filly Stellar Wind several years ago which resulted in her skin being cut. He got a slap on the wrist penalty for that i.e. a small fine which is chicken feed to these curs.

        • It seems that the stud fee ($200,000) that AMERICAN PHAROAH demands is more important to these industry people than if it took “excessive and brutal whipping” to get him to cross the finish line first in the four major races that he won.

          • 100% Wanda and American Pharaoh is just one of many colts in the global horseracing industry who are “bred in the purple” and are flogged to get the win for the breeding barn.

  3. Not all trainers and stables are guilty of your charges. Yes, there are unscrupulous outfits but NOT ALL!

    • Steve, what is your opinion of a racing jurisdiction that allows and continues to allow a known offender and a repeat offender of brutal and excessive use of the whip on a horse that causes cuts to the horse’s flesh? Do you think it is scrupulous for the rules of racing and the stewards to not ban this Charles Conrad from racing?

    • All trainers use up horses and dispose of them. Do you find that acceptable?

  4. According to the links, Charlie only paid $300 for previous abuses. He’ll just keep on hurting the horses above what they already suffer. Horrible human being in a horrible human endeavor.

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