Words Fail Me: 180th Race Today

Today, at the hellhole known as Camarero in Puerto Rico, 12-year-old Hipocrates is scheduled to be raced for the 180th time (all at Camarero). I repeat, 180th time. Worse still, over his past 10 races, Hipocrates has finished a combined 342 lengths back – 34 per race. And to be clear, those numbers are not skewed by one or two really bad finishes: He did not come within 20 lengths in any of those 10 races. In the years I’ve been doing this, this is a level of abuse practically unrivaled. They are running this poor boy to his death.

The chief scum here are owner Rock Racing and trainer Maximo Gomez, but equally culpable is the track itself. Please take a moment today to voice your anger:

Camarero main line: 787-641-6060 (ask for someone who speaks English)
Jaime Rivera, director of racing: jrivera.emmanuelli@comjuegos.pr.gov
Maria Christina, vice president, Camarero: mmari@camareroracepr.com
Charles Cupril, president of owners association: cacuprill@cuprill.com
Luis Orraca, president of owners group: luisorracachpr@gmail.com
Carlos Quintana, racing commissioner: quintanac@comjuegos.pr.gov
Juan Santaella, racing commissioner: santaellaj@comjuegos.pr.gov

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  1. Words don’t fail me, but they’re the kind of words I can’t use on this blog.
    Love them like family, treated like kings, my a$$.

  2. The veterinarians in Puerto Rico should be ashamed of themselves. They should be reprimanded somehow by an authority higher than themselves. That does occasionally happen in the United States. It is logical to assume that this very abused and extremely exploited horse is suffering all kinds of pain from the constant wear and tear on his body. Of course, this horse suffers mentally and emotionally as well as physically.

  3. The only thing that surprises me about this whole sordid industry is how they manage to get away with it.

  4. I think Puerto Rico is a real hell hole. I hear that some rescue there is now out of funds and unable to add any more horses to their list because they already have 33 lined up. I remember reading about how many horses are shipped from the mainland (.i.e. from here) to Puerto Rico in SHIPPING CONTAINERS in terrible conditions and for a long journey because their owners are too cheap to send them by air, in the heat and without water and with adequate air. Poor Hipocrates’ plight absolutely breaks my heart. Is anyone aware of the names of any rescues that we could contact to alert them about this poor horse????? I will certainly make these calls Patrick. This horse certainly has guts, to have survived this long, I pray somehow he will be redeemed.

    • The rescue in Puerto Rico is the Caribbean Thoroughbred Aftercare which is an “industry funded” program, so it is no wonder that they ran out of funds and cannot take in anymore Thoroughbred racehorses that need to be rescued from their racing connections. Also, in Puerto Rico, Mexico and some other countries, Equine Piroplasmosis is a serious problem. It could become more of a problem in the USA if there were not checks and balances to keep it under control.
      Horses with Equine Piroplasmosis are more expensive to treat and keep them from suffering and dying from it.
      I think the United States Department of Agriculture should be ordered to refuse the export of any horse to Puerto Rico and any other country where the ticks that spread Equine Piroplasmosis exist naturally. I have not heard of any restrictions in that regard; only monitoring the disease to allegedly slow down or stop the disease from spreading within the borders of the USA.

      • If Hipocrates tests positive for piroplasmosis, he will not be allowed to leave PR. CTA already has 8 horses in their program that have tested positive for the disease so there is no room for this horse even if he can be bought/claimed. Keep your fingers crossed that he can be acquired and is negative. There is an awesome sanctuary here in the states that might be an option. It is the same sanctuary that accepted Salt On The Rim.

        • If he can be claimed or bought and tests negative for Equine Piroplasmosis, it would be super awesome for him to be allowed to live out his remaining days at a sanctuary where he would be safe and cared for properly.
          When you say that his connections have a goal to get him to be raced 200 times, it doesn’t surprise me due to the mentality of these people.
          If he was being raced in the United States and ran in higher class races, the Paulick Report and the BloodHorse would be writing articles about him and what a great thing it is for a horse to be raced 200 times even though anyone who cares about treating horses humanely would be appalled.

  5. I am unable to get ANY RESULTS from races today. He’s in race 4 that should have been run already. Is anyone having any more luck than I am getting results from this ungodly track?

  6. I keep getting cut off by their phone system and never talked to anyone. But last night I got this response by e-mail after I wrote a letter, also included below. I did reply to him and told him I volunteer with HRW. This response is from President of “owner’s group”, Charles Cupril.

    Ms. Waltien:

    The main problem in horse racing in Puerto Rico is the inertia and incompetence of the governmental entity who is supposed to be in control thereof, particularly the Executive Director and Director of Racing, with whom Puerto Rico Horseowners Association, Inc. has been attempting for at least the last year and a half to, among other matters, to implement the Racing Regulation and preclude the entry of horses in poor condition, entered only to fill races notwithstanding their consistent poor performance.

    I don’t know who you are and the reason for your correspondence.

    In my case, you can google me to learn of my dedication to the breeding and racing of the thoroughbred with its best interest in mind.
    Sent from my iPhone

    > On Sep 10, 2023, at 6:25 PM, Martha Waltien wrote:
    > To All At the Race Track,
    > This is not going to be a polite message because of what you are doing.
    > To avoid misunderstanding, I already know that racing track veterinarians will clear mostly EVERY horse to let them race. They are NOT trustworthy veterinarians. They are getting paid by the racing industry, for heaven’s sake.
    > So, please don’t tell me that Hipocrates is OK and safe to race. This is simply outrageous.
    > Why on God’s green earth, if you have half a heart, would you race this 12 year old, a horse who lags behind, for his 181th race? Are you all that cruel?
    > Take him off the list! Scratch him and let him get adopted by a sanctuary or to a quality home!
    > You make me SICK.
    > Martha Waltien
    > New York City

    • Thank you, Martha. His response oozes with self-righteous and above-the-law moral depravity as usual with the members of the horseracing industry.

      • His last paragraph/sentence is a hoot. I think they have learned long ago to delude themselves. He probably believes what he said.

        • He evidently is about as sharp as a dull knife that couldn’t cut warm butter when he says he doesn’t know the reason for your correspondence.

  7. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what is happening at this track and yet we still are allowing horses born, raised and racing in the US to be shipped there. While PR has a problem so does the US racing industry for knowingly allowing these horses to be shipped there. Almost half of the horses racing in PR are shipped there from the US. OBS, Keenland, Fasig-Tipton are allowing yearling purchases to be sent to PR without any money being set aside for aftercare. How about the US take a stand and maybe that would help PR get in line. At least we would stop contributing to it. By allowing it, we are condoning it.

    • Heather, Hipocrates was bred in Puerto Rico. Therefore, it is difficult to force Puerto Rico to “get in line.” They March to the beat of a different drummer. Also, the culture is entirely different in that country and animals aren’t valued on any level. I have heard from a reliable source that the owner wants to get this horse to the 200 race mark. That was the goal with another horse owned by the same entity and that horse made it to 190 races before succumbing to colic.

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