Maryland: “Jockey observed that the horse’s foot was turned in the wrong direction.”

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.”

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  1. The condition of these young horses is outrageous. They are being destroyed before they breakdown.
    The question with Auspicious Lad is why he collapsed, not that the trauma he consequently suffered may have contributed to his death! He raced six days prior to his fatal collapse.
    Bullout was not ready to come off the Vet’s list, was he?. They got their answer!
    Poor horse.

    • Also, Bullout had a dismal PP. “Never a factor” in all five of his races and trailed the field in two. Why were they trying to bring him back? Clearly he was not fit for racing.

  2. Also, looking at Bullout’s dismal PP he was not at all competitive so why were they trying to bring him back?

  3. Why were they forcing any 2-year-old colt or filly to race?
    Why do the racing Commissioners and/or Stewards allow any Jockey Club registered Thoroughbred, let alone one with a history of being on the Vet’s List, to be forced to train meaning basically being whipped around the racetrack with (and/or without) injuries that could be seen in an X-ray of the affected limb(s) and/or joint(s)?

    a) they want to fill a racecard,
    b) they love to exploit horses,
    c) they don’t want to give the horse a chance to heal,
    d) they want to have money coming in,
    e) they don’t want to spend more money on the horse than they absolutely have to,
    f) they don’t care if the horse can win,
    g) they just want a piece of that “Racino Pie” so to speak,
    h) they are morally depraved,
    i) they are sadistic,
    j) they are greedy,
    k) they don’t care about the well-being of the horse,
    l) they do what they have always done, because that’s what they do,
    m) they don’t see this one particular horse as being an exception to the rule,
    n) they don’t want to lose the stall space,
    o) they force the horse to run because that’s what the horse was bred to do,
    p) they forced this particular young, underdeveloped colt to run because they could,
    q) they are moronic individuals,
    r) they are not true horsemen,
    s) the government allows Animal Cruelty to go on in this industry,
    t) they know Pari-mutuel wagering is legal in the United States of America,
    u) they are die-hard abusers of horses,
    v) they are die-hard horse-dopers,
    w) they are desperately evil people,
    x) they are two-faced,
    y) they have a “dream” and,
    z) they have not been arrested for VIOLATING Animal Welfare Codes.

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