Friday, at Belterra, in addition to Bonnie’s the Best being “vanned off in distress,” there was this: Love You Goodbye was “trouble loading,” then “went wrong at the 1/4 pole” – yet she was still made (by jockey Luan Machado) to finish the race, some 58 lengths behind the pack. No word yet on her status. Prior to Friday, Love You’s two most recent races were last, 37 lengths back; last, 32 lengths back. What’s more, those two races were one year apart (May ’21, May ’22). The responsible: James/Nancy Adams.
All horseracing is abuse, of course. But then there is abuse in the extreme (measured quantitatively). Here are some current cases. (While I only list the present abusers, please know that given the length of servitude, each of the following has been passed around like the piece of cheap chattel he is. So there are many more to blame.)
Boot Legger is ten years old. Thursday at Thistledown, he was put to the whip for the 92nd time. Current abusers: Michelle Winters, Odin Londono, Jr.
Crafty Chief is 12 years old. Thursday at Thistledown (yes, same day, same place), he was put to the whip for the 84th time. Current abuser: Valerie Shanyfelt.
Finally, Rock City Roadhog is 12 years old. Jul 3 at Prairie, this poor animal was put to the whip for the 112th time. Current abusers: Pass Line Stables, Schuyler Condon.
This is horseracing.