What They’re Doing to This Poor Boy – 122nd Race Tonight – Is Pure Evil

In horseracing, there’s everyday, garden-variety abuse, and then there’s the truly egregious. In the latter category is what’s happening to the horse known as Laddie Boy. Laddie turned 12 in February. Bad enough. But get this: tonight, he will be put to the whip for the 122nd time. Yes, 122nd time. This one will take place at Wyoming’s Energy Downs, a cheap track that only runs for a month each spring. But it wasn’t always this way.

Laddie’s “career” began way back in 2013 with a race at Keeneland. Of course he was trucked around to many other tracks (and states) over the years, but early on at least, he was being raced at the top levels, including a $400K Grade 1 (the highest kind). The descent began in earnest toward the end of 2021, with races at bottom-of-the-barrel Delta, Fonner, Arapahoe, and Miles City. At Fonner on April 21 of this year, he was “For Sale” at the ugly price of $2,500 – about as low as it gets.

Laddie’s current abusersStan Brewer and Gilbert Ecoffey – have been at the helm since putting a “claim” in on Laddie before a race on March 4 of this year. They then proceeded to race him again just eight days later, with Laddie finishing almost 29 lengths back. Then, another race 12 days after that. These, mind you, were race numbers 116 & 117.

In May, though it may be hard to believe, it got even worse. Brewer and Ecoffey raced this poor soul on May 7, May 14, and May 21. That’s three races in two weeks – races, I remind, 119, 120, and 121. Although I say it a lot, it bears repeating: In the necropsies, we see time and again, 4-, 3-, even 2-year-old horses (with, as expected, relatively low numbers of races) who died with osteoarthritis, sometimes in all four legs. Not to mention, the chronic ulcers we see in almost all racehorses. Imagine what Laddie’s body looks (on the inside) and, more important, feels like.

Which brings us to today. Laddie is slated to be raced at 7:30 mountain tonight (6th race), so we have ample time to protest. Please take a moment out of your day, for Laddie.

Energy Downs (aka 307 Horse Racing):
Jack Greer, CEO & Director of Racing

Kris Brown, Director of Gaming

Racing Office: 307-687-6500
Racing Secretary Extension: 6588
Assistant Racing Secretary Extension: 6592

Wyoming Gaming Commission: 307-265-4015

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  1. Where are all those good people in racing we keep hearing about?? Oh wait.
    If there were good people in racing- this horse wouldn’t have been tricked around, ending up in bottom level claimers, and wouldn’t still be running at 12.

  2. LADDIE BOY crossed the finish line first in the 10th race going 5 & 1/4 Furlongs at Miles City, Montana on May 14, 2023. As long as they can use him up for all he is worth to them, that is all these creeps care about. I hope someone can rescue him from his exploiters, before they literally kill him.

  3. Also, does this not quite possibly violate HISA’s new rules about repeatedly racing horses that finish too many lengths back?

  4. This poor boy!! It makes my stomach turn and my heart weep. I contacted every single person on this list and filled out the contact form. I have no faith there are any good people left in this evil industry who would do right by horses but miracles sometimes do happen. I am hoping this is one of those times.

  5. I wonder what the apologists have to say about this absolute abuse??!!
    They never seem to notice the pitiful situations of so many of the claimers.
    All this cruelty is part of this sick game. Racing is the enabler.
    The participants can’t pick and choose what they want to acknowledge. They own the cruelty.
    HISA is an absolute sham. Period!

    • One of the things they say to defend the abuse is that the horses were bred for this, as if we didn’t know that already. Since Wyoming and Montana are “cowboy” states, I would imagine that they think this exploiting a horse for so many years is cool.
      I wonder if someone will use him in harness for Chuck wagon racing, if they don’t kill him?

  6. Who originally bred/purchased/owned him? Did anyone reach out to them? Just a thought.

    • LADDIE BOY (KY), Born: February 12, 2011;
      Breeder: Frederick J. McEwan;
      Sold for $60,000 at the Keeneland September 2012 Yearling Sale;
      Buyer: Mike Connors;
      Consignor: Lane’s End.

  7. As long as horses are still winning once in awhile most owners will race them to their demise. If I’m not mistaken, insurance policies are available that cover “loss of income” if the horse breaks down. I can’t imagine an underwriter accepting a 12 year old with a 122 starts, but it’s possible. It might depend on their prior earnings. Sadly, Laddie Boy has a grim future even if he doesn’t die on the track. Since his owners are so “concerned” about his well being, I’m sure they’ll ship him to slaughter as soon as he proves to be worth less than his feed. His only chance is for someone to step up to claim him and give him a blessed retirement. Rescues are not what people think they are. So often the horses end up being neglected and abused, or just loaded back onto a slaughter truck after mega donations were raised for their care. I learned this the hard way. One “rescue” I used to support uses a bolt gun to “humanely” euthanize about 80% of the auction horses they pull when many of them could’ve received vet care and survived. In my opinion, a captive bolt is not humane euthanization for equines, especially in the wrong hands.The donations raised to support this “rescue” were more than adequate to provide a peaceful humane euthanization by a vet for the horses they opted to kill. Equine rescues have become a dirty business. Many of them are just as greedy and abusive as the racing industry itself. Laddie Boy needs an angel, one human being with the heart and the means to take care of him themselves. Otherwise, being euthanized on the track may be the best he’s going to get. I wish I could save Laddie but I have nowhere to keep him. His story is the story of many. It’s tragic.

    • Thank you, Karen, for sharing your experience with a “scam” rescue. I’ve heard of several different occasions of other people who have scammed people in the past. One lady who owns/owned a valid and credible rescue (in Washington state) had a nightmarish experience with a certain person who agreed to take some horses and take care of them. It turned out to be a big legal battle for the woman with the valid rescue against the scammer.
      I’ve heard of other incidents of people who locked the “rescued” horse/s up in a barn/stall and literally starved them to death while making appeals to people for donations by saying the horse/s needed some type of vet care, or something else that cost money, pulling on the heartstrings of people who didn’t know they were being scammed at the time.
      There was another group of women who claimed to be rescuing horses. One of the many things they did was they bought some intact stallions at auction and, prepare to be repulsed, they ate the horses’ testicles after castration. (I’m not sure who did the castrating.)

      There have been lots of horror stories shared on Facebook about scammers who exploited the horses as well as the people who didn’t do the proper vetting process of the supposed rescue and/or person who was trusted by the original rescuer. There are so many different things about this topic that there is not enough space to go into all the details here.
      It pays to do the research, whatever that might include.

      • These horror stories are all true and getting justice for the abused tortured horses has proven almost impossible even when a large number of people are fighting for it. After the Dr Drip case I came to realize there are no protections for equines in this country. Dr Drip was given to a private party after he was no longer lucrative on the track and he was literally tortured to death, skeletal, maggot infested open wounds everywhere, his back looked like battery acid had been poured over it. Worst of all, they were riding him in that condition. Dr Drip could not be saved, and although we worked tirelessly to bring him justice, his murderer went unpunished. When I say that for some horses euthanization on the track may be a blessing, it’s because I’ve witnessed the alternative.

        • Karen, I understand that although not all horses are treated that horribly after being rescued from the racetrack.

        • I am appalled at the idea of horses being abused and whipped. The ending of horseracing would be best for the horses if they could be place with an owner that really cared for them and treated them decently.

  8. Karen, Huge thanks for your detailed description and explanation of what often goes on in rescue. Certainly, I know some fabulous, kind, altruistic rescuers and sanctuaries but what you wrote is extremely alarming to hear! This poor, poor horse! I am sick of heart to know his likely fate!

  9. Laddie Boy is out of the popular champion War Pass. That’s why his name rang a bell with me. He has over 600,000 dollars in lifetime earnings. He’s a gelding so that’s why he isn’t being used to breed. I think he may be a candidate for Old Friends thoroughbred retirement farm. Michael Blowen should be contacted to find out, but there is the issue of getting his owners to give him up. The funds could be raised to buy him. IF they would sell and Good Friends is willing to take him. Laddie has made around 5 thousand dollars this year and around 15,000 in 2022, so they may not be willing to relinquish him at this point. There is a slim chance Laddie Boy’s bloodline could be his salvation.

  10. I’m new to your blog and discovered it through trying to learn why so many horses die on racetracks. I’ve since come to learn that it isn’t just the racetrack but breeding, feeding, and training that contributes to these poor horses demise. My heart is breaking for these most noble of creatures. In today’s climate of protection of everything are we slowly creeping any closer to protection for racehorses? What can I do to help?

  11. Carrol Ann Chambers, one thing you can do to find out more is to click on the three lines at the top right corner. It will show the menu. Click on Get Involved for more information.

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