Through a FOIA request to the Maryland Racing Commission, I have confirmed the following kills at that state’s tracks thus far this year.
Bullout, Feb 5, Laurel T
“Just past the wire, the jockey noticed something was wrong and pulled up the horse. Jockey dismounted and observed that the horse’s RF foot was turned in the wrong direction – comminuted fracture, euthanized on track.”
Turns out, Bullout was on the Vet’s List at the time of the breakdown, and this “breeze” was to see about getting him off that list. He was just two years old.
Celtic Cousen, Feb 10, Laurel T
“The jockey heard a pop and pulled the horse up: fractures of both P1 and P2 – P1 fracture consisted of five large parts and multiple smaller fragments; euthanized on the track.”
Dr. Daniel (commission vet): “Celtic Cousen was a lightly raced horse with many works under his belt. There was quite a degree of joint disease for such a young horse.”
In fact, Celtic had moderate-severe DJD in all four fetlocks. He was just three years old.
Auspicious Lad, Feb 23, Laurel T
“While the horse was galloping during the morning workout, [he] suddenly collapsed and died on the track.”
No definitive cause was given here, but Auspicious (below) suffered “trauma to his head and neck,” which, they say, may have contributed to his death. He was just three years old.
Bigmancan, Apr 20, Laurel R
“Around 1/2-mile pole jockey noticed something was wrong and started to pull him up: comminuted, displaced fracture.”
Trainer Damon Dilodovico’s interview:
Commission: “To your knowledge, did this horse ever have surgery?”
Dilodovico: “I don’t know.”
Commission: “Did the horse have any history of chronic injury?”
Dilodovico: “Maybe something with his ankles, but I’m not sure, he was a big horse.”
Dr. Daniel: “Bigmancan had multiple intra-articular injections in 2022 with previous connections. He also had a Vet’s List history after a voided claim in Sep 2022. Bigmancan had chronic degenerative joint disease with moderate decreased range of motion…. He was slightly choppy in jog portion of pre-race exam, which was normal for him.”
Chronic DJD, decreased range of motion, “slightly choppy in jog” – and yet they allowed him to race anyway. Bigmancan was five years old.
Delaware River, May 23, Laurel S
“Multiple fractures in the RF pastern.” Also: “DJD [all four fetlocks]; stomach ulcers.”