Earlier this month, I posted about seven horses who were inexplicably added to the NYS Gaming Commission’s death database months after the fact. This year, weeks have been going by without any listings – both in deaths and injuries – even while I know horses have been “vanned off.” Clearly, something’s going on in the Commission office. (I am making inquiries.) All this is to say, I have two more belated updates.
Slow Down Summer, a “vanned off in distress” after the 4th at Aqueduct Jan 28, is indeed dead. She was two. Also dead: Amman, “sustained injury to right foreleg” in the 9th at Aqueduct Feb 26. He had just turned three. And that’s that.
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Is this lack of reporting dead horses by the New York State Gaming Commission a version of the shell game?
Do the Gaming Commissioners and the other stakeholders WHO ARE engaged in this constant daily routine injuring, doping, maiming, trafficking and killing of horses REALLY BELIEVE that the “radical” people who are against the constant daily routine cruelty to horses that inevitably ends in the horse/s being euthanized due to “career-ending” injuries sustained during racing and/or training WON’T NOTICE OR WON’T FIND OUT that there are vast DISCREPANCIES in their reporting and/or lack of reporting?????????
What a radical group of people (we are) to have the audacity to demand that this willful and sadistic exploitation of BABY horses (forced to perform as though they are or were adult horses) and the INHERENT mistreatment and the SUBSEQUENTIAL death of the horses be STOPPED & BANNED completely!
This sadistic indifference and mistreatment of horses for racing and wagering causing harm and death to so many horses is a major factor in the cause of a steady rate of decline in the population of Thoroughbreds (and the other breeds of horses used for racing and wagering). It is NOT okay to stand by and just watch the industry cut its own throat while they are brutally abusing and killing innocent baby horses, many of them afflicted with bone disease as well as other afflictions.
As long as the Racing Commissioners and the other stakeholders are hell-bent on going down in flames, it is NOT OKAY to just stand by and let them abuse, injure, maim and kill baby horses!
Of late it seems the New York State Gaming Commission is loath to disclose any deaths and injuries of racehorses under its stewardship. Now why would it do that…
Maybe wait until after the $455 Million State-backed Bonds loan package is officially approved to disclose the more realistic degree of neverending carnage of horses used and abused by this so-called S***t of Kings in the State of New York…???
Their higher priority would be to manipulate the numbers of *JOBS* *JOBS* *JOBS* *JOBS* *JOBS* & *DOLLARS* *DOLLARS* *DOLLARS* *DOLLARS* *DOLLARS* added to the economy of New York State.
And adding to this,they delete the race replays with the swiftness of The Flash so no one sees it.
One word – desperate.
The horse racing industry is completely aware of, in no uncertain terms, that their industry is DYING.
Awful news, such as the rate of racing-related deaths, which, I believe is increasing every day, and the proliferation of social media -in other words, it’s getting harder and harder to hide your sins these days – AND the attendance rate at even the BIGGEST race tracks – what is it now, down, 87% – is a ‘trifecta’ of disaster for the industry.
Even the storied Saratoga meet is losing attendance particularly on weekdays.
Desperate? you bet they are. SO desperate that NY racing would literally fall apart without the $455 mil the Governor so generously doled out to them..
When I was actively betting [I no longer bet horse races of any kind, any more] the tracks were full, the betting handle was substantial, and the deaths were, or it at least it seemed, rare. In the 1990s, though, remember, social media was almost non-existent.
So, in a desperate – and I know, I’m really over-using this word – attempt to save their sorry skins, the industry turns to the politicians for a handout.
I know of no politician who will ever say ‘no’ if there’s a chance to slide some cash into their pockets. Gov. Hochul is no exception. When I was a regular frequenter at the NY race tracks, most of the talk back then was about then-NY Governor MARIO Cuomo, who, as I was told by some of the ‘bigwigs’, HATED horse racing.
Seems his “hatred” of the sport was largely due to the fact that the industry didn’t grease his palm often enough.
Gov. Hochul seems to have no such problem.
But then again, horse racing was a thriving industry, and lots of cash was coming in from the bettors. And attendance was strong, even on weekdays in the winter at Aqueduct. Now? As Tony Soprano might say, “fuhhgeddaboudit”
It’s no secret that young people are moving away from the sport in droves, and as I stated in an earlier post, they see no point in “watching a bunch of old men screaming at television sets!”
Little by little, these “old men” will die, and, without younger adults replacing them, the sport will die with them. I always thought that attending the races was a very cool, hip way to spend one’s leisure time, even if you weren’t a big bettor [yes, I was] but now? How can one ignore the horror these poor horses are put through, particularly when one is being made aware of the fact that this carnage occurs on a regular, daily basis, with NOTHING BEING DONE by the industry to halt it.
It’s only a matter of time, though, before the industry finally dies out for good. Yes, Saratoga, the Breeders’ Cup, and Triple Crown will be the last to go. But – and this is interesting – I hear there is talk to move the second leg of the Triple Crown, ‘The Preakness Stakes’ to Laurel, from Pimlico. Seems that Pimlico Racetrack might be the next one on the chopping block, as it cannot sustain itself, either.
The truth of the matter is: Horse racing has seen it’s day. All the subsidiary money in the world won’t hold it up if no one will bet on the races. And there’s a lot more options to bet on these days that DOESN’T involve torturing animals
Last year at this time, the NYSGC had already logged EIGHT Training Deaths.This year? Zero. That’s a pretty incredible training “safety” improvement for NYRA, no?
Joe, I find it interesting that you say the industry was ‘thriving’ when you were actively betting on horses at the NY racetracks, because, if I’m not mistaken, I think you mean in the 1990s. The reason I say that is because in 1986 the new FOAL CROP NUMBERS for THOROUGHBREDS reached its PEAK of over 51,000 JOCKEY CLUB registered young horses for that 12-month period. The New Foal Crop Numbers started to decline thereafter.
So even though the New Foal Crop Numbers had been in decline for three years (1987, 1888, 1989) before the year 1990, it was still a thriving business in your experience and perception.
I feel certain that very, very few people (at least, relatively speaking) outside of the actual horse-meat-grinding industry had a clue, at that time in the history of horseracing, just how many hundreds of horses were being FATALLY injured on racetracks all across the United States where Pari-mutuel betting was legal.
I forgot to mention the unknown numbers of horses injured each year, but not necessarily killed at the tracks, that were no longer viable as race horses and therefore became classified as “UNWANTED” by their owners and sold to the killbuyers. That’s estimated to be in the thousands each year.
I think it’s important and significant to note that it was a lot easier and quicker to dispose of unwanted horses before a certain year. It was a lot shorter ride/haul to a slaughterhouse before a certain year. Before that certain year, many states had slaughterhouses in their state not far away from the farms and the racetracks. I believe that certain year was 2007.
Wanda, are you saying that since 2007 officials have actually made it harder to dispose of “unwanted” horses? Why would they do that? This “sport” is such an atrocity it’s difficult even to read about it. Though that’s true of many issues in which animals are exploited.
There are other reasons why horse slaughter was banned in the USA. I was making an observation that, as a side note, kill buyers must haul their horses intended for slaughter many miles farther from the point of departure in order to reach their intended destination. In my opinion, it makes it much more inconvenient for certain people, such as the killbuyers filling a contract with the meatpackers, to reach this destination which would be a slaughterhouse in Canada or Mexico. There are killbuyers with feedlots in the USA so it would not be that much more difficult to dump horses into the slaughter pipeline from a racetrack. There are so many different issues with dumping racehorses into the slaughter pipeline. One example is that they have made “rules” against selling racehorses for slaughter. But people who are accustomed to breaking rules can just circumvent the rules/regulations/laws by somehow removing the lip tattoos of racehorses and fudging the paperwork to change the identity of the horse and his or her human connections so that the previous owner is unknown and can’t be traced. Maybe someone could know of a specific horse or group of horses that were removed from the race track stables and shipped to a location where the horses will be headed for a slaughter house across the border of the USA. Lots of luck proving anything though in a case like that if you’re up against a “good ol’ boy” network, not to mention a ruthless den of thieves.
It seems that nothing is off limits when it comes to horses, no rules, laws, etc. are enforced except in minimal instances. Thank you for your work and info.