Welcome to Derby Week at Churchill: 3 Dead Horses in 2 Days

Having just reported a kill at Churchill today, another. Chasing Artie, the Daily Racing Form says, “collapsed and died” following the 8th race. That’s “collapsed and died” – at the tender age of five. We also now know that Parents Pride, originally reported as a “went wrong, vanned off” Saturday, is also dead. So let’s recap: In this, the biggest week in U.S. Racing, three dead horses in two racing days at the Derby’s host track.

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  1. With the multiple INJURIES and killings of racehorses this week, I can only hope that more people will comprehend that this is an average course of events for this barbaric industry. I hope that more and more people will comprehend that this is what the people in this industry consider as “part of the game” and that they attempt to sweep the horrific injuries and deaths of horses under the rug and deny and deflect that it happens routinely, even though THEY ARE FINE WITH THE CARNAGE as a “normal” part of horseracing. It’s Business As Usual.
    If they say, “This rarely happens” what they really mean is “This happens more often than you can imagine but we’re fine with it.”
    NOT to mention something really perceptive like “put on your big boy and big girl panties and kick your inner child in the ass”, you know, because they really have a handle on being toxic. Oh, did I say “toxic”? I meant sensitive. Yeah, sensitivity training for dummies; that’s it.

  2. The Derby is a freaking blood bath already and it’s still 4 days away.

  3. What would cause a supposedly “fit to race” 5-year-old to collapse and die after a race? Possibly a heart attack but I’ve noted several “collapsed and died” incidents recently, whether it happened in the stall, on the track, or walking back to the barn. Are these horses tested post-race for really harmful, possibly fatal drugs? All those women on Derby Day in their glamorous hats, drinking their mint juleps and behaving as if the Derby is the Met Gala of racing–do these indifferent airheads ever give thought to how inhumane horse-racing truly is? It’s so disgraceful!

  4. Ladypurr9 writes: “do these indifferent airheads ever give thought to how inhumane horse-racing truly is? It’s so disgraceful!”

    Wanda Diamond writes that she “hope[s] that more people will comprehend that this is an average course of events for this barbaric industry.”

    Well, it’s a pretty big generalization to assume that every single person in that crowd is an “indifferent airhead”, and there are anywhere from 150,000 to 175,000 people who attend the Kentucky Derby each year. The short answer is “no”, not every single person who attends the races that day is an “indifferent airhead”.

    But these fans ARE woefully uninformed, and the racing industry does everything in its power to see to it that THAT remains so!

    And, “no”, the true facts are, most people DON’T know that the daily horror which inevitably occurs IS the “average course of events”. Unfortunately, the racing industry does a wonderful and highly efficient job of hiding the multiple atrocities to the general public that, yes, do occur on a daily basis.

    But think about this.
    Almost every single person at the track is very much unaware of the following, something I can say with some relative authority, since I WAS one of those people who attended the races almost every day.

    1.”Vanned off almost always means dead” – well, unless a horse is euthanized right there on the track, most people think the “vanned-off” horse will be all right with the proper care! I know that it may seem ridiculous to most people who read this site, but of the 150,000+ who attend the Derby each year, there are, by a very rough “guess”-timation, at least HALF of them – and probably more- who visit the races ONLY on Derby Day. SO, it stands to reason that they don’t realize the awful dark side of the ‘sport’ that the horse racing industry does its level best to hide!

    2. “Went wrong” – when uninformed patrons of racing hear that a horse “went wrong” or “took a bad step” they invariably think that with a little help and perhaps some veterinary medical care, the animal will be just fine, and eventually get back to racing soon. They ALSO don’t realize that this is race-caller jargon which really means, “horse fell, will be dead.”

    There are many, many more, but I think I’ve made my point. As a reformed horse race bettor, I, myself was totally unware of the extent of all these horrors until I became a follower of this site. Yes, many racegoers DO BELIEVE that the deaths and inhumane treatment of the horses is, at best, rare, occasional and fixable. The incessantly resourceful and thorough reporting on this hell-hole of an industry by Mr. Battuello has appealed to my sense of logic and is one of the reasons why I chose to no longer bet the horses.

    I would place a bet, though, that if any of these casual fans of racing knew the true story of what really goes on behind the scenes, they’d probably not support it either.

    In light of these facts, Mr. Battuello, you certainly have your work cut out for you. But the good news, and that 73% figure of those AGAINST racing, as noted in a previous post, is encouraging, to say the least.

  5. Until the year 2019, I was one of those people who was not aware that SO MANY horses were, and still are, being fatally injured on a daily basis at racetracks around the country.
    CBS News did a great job (maybe not that great — I say great, because they even reported on it at all. CBS News doesn’t normally report on anything about horse racing except just a few seconds of who won the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, Belmont) in reporting on the carnage at Santa Anita Park in 2019 as you may remember. Of course, they didn’t go in depth on all of the cruelty to the horses or ALL of the causes of racehorse DEATHS the way that this site does, but it was an eye-opener in many ways for those people who didn’t follow the racing circuit all over the country. As you pointed out, Joe, there are many people who don’t follow racing except for the world-class level; the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, the Belmont Stakes.

    The publicity surrounding the number of horses being injured and killed at Santa Anita Park, and on such a continual basis, helped to bring attention to the cruelty of racing to so many more people

    Unfortunately, the people in charge at Santa Anita Park attempted to advance the belief that this was only the track surface that was the problem causing so many horses to go down.
    Horseracing Wrongs has helped me to get a totally different picture of racing; a more accurate picture that makes me feel completely repulsed to watch horses running and being whipped by jockeys knowing that the horse is not 100% and that the doping is rampant, doping being an every day occurrence in this industry.
    I did know that there were a lot of things that were not right about horse racing, such as starting them out way too young and keeping horses confined to small stalls for twenty-three hours a day every day. I had read about some of the horrible things they did to horses to manipulate the order of finish way back when, before the invention of the personal computer, the internet, the world wide web, the touch-screen cellphone.
    One of the horrible things was putting sponges up a horse’s nostrils so they couldn’t breathe in order to manipulate the outcome of a race and the payouts at the betting window. (There was one case of this profiled on “America’s Most Wanted” by John Walsh. I never did know if they found the criminal who put sponges up a certain racehorse’s nostrils.)
    Once you know how cruel these so-called horsemen are to their horses (and how two-faced these people are) and that they do so many different cruel things to the horses knowingly, willfully and continually, how can anyone with a moral compass support this heinous cruelty?
    It’s either the absolutely morally depraved or the “not-well-informed-enough” person who would continue to engage in or support horseracing.

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