“Progress,” NYRA-Style: Now 53 Dead Racehorses This Year

In response to an interview I did earlier this month, NYRA spokesperson Patrick McKenna said the following: “[T]he opponents of horseracing who seek to end the sport in New York are certainly entitled to their opinion, but they’re not entitled to their own set of facts. The fact is that thoroughbred racing in New York State…is safer today than at any point in recent history.”

Yesterday, Ms. Kavanaugh, a 3-year-old filly being prepped for her first race, was killed at Belmont: “horse sustained an injury while galloping – euthanized on track.” For NYRA, she is the 53rd “athlete” killed at its three “stadiums” – just this year. (Since 2009, the death toll is over 1,000.) Is this how we’re to define “safer today than at any point in recent history”? Is this how we’re to mark progress? For shame, Mr. McKenna. For shame, NY horseracing. For shame, all who continue to support this vile industry.


  1. Progress; what a sick joke.
    The wheels are falling off the propaganda bus, Mr.McKenna.
    Abuse is abuse, and one horse dying is one too many.

  2. That’s interesting that he would choose the the wording “… they’re not entitled to their own set of facts.”
    As is obvious, you, Patrick Battuello, are submitting the facts of actual horses injured and killed on NYRA racetracks straight from the FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT Requests, so it’s obvious that horseracing in New York wasn’t safe for all of these horses both named and yet-to-be-named; whereas he, Patrick McKenna is making up this smoke & mirrors line that horse racing is “safer” while there is NO FACTUAL EVIDENCE to support his statement.
    Thank you for sharing the information from the FOIA requests because it is factual evidence to show that horseracing in New York is not safe for the horses. Period.

  3. And you, Mr. McKenna, are entitled to ignore facts. Also, you are entitled to your own fiction. But the numbers don’t lie!
    You know racing has never been safe for horses and it never will be. Even those that make it out alive have issues, some quite serious. I own some ex racers that can never be ridden because of what your “sport” did to them!

    P.S. I wonder what contribution Mr.McKenna et al made to help the horses being auctioned off with NO reserves as part of the NY breeding farm dispersal not far from Saratoga?? These people know many of these horses will be slaughtered. Their silence is deafening!!

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