A ruling handed down yesterday from the Prairie Meadows Board of Stewards:

“Jockey Daniel Ruiz Amaya was duly notified on September 24 for an alleged violation of excessive whipping of his horse ‘Sassalitical’ during the running of the 4th race. Amaya did not appear for his hearing on September 25. The Board finds Amaya’s use of the whip excessive and in violation of 491 IAC 10.5(2)(J)(4). Therefore, the Board hereby suspends Amaya from riding races for three race days.”

All fairly mundane, but then this:

“The Board notes this is Amaya’s fourth offense for whipping during the 2021 Prairie Meadows race meet.”

This wretch is found guilty of animal abuse – for what else to call “excessive whipping”? – four times at one track just since May, and is only suspended, and for but three days at that. The lie of “Racing Cares” exposed, again.

The NYS Gaming Commission has disclosed the death of Madrone at Saratoga this past Friday – “neurologic disorder…euthanized due to poor prognosis.” Madrone was two years old and being prepped for his first race. He becomes the 15th dead horse at Saratoga this year – right at the track’s historical average. Reform is a ruse, safe racing a lie. This industry kills horses as a matter of course.

Saratoga’s Dead, 2021

Mister Bobby, May 13, training – “collapsed and died” (five years old)
Trucking Baron, Jun 29, stall – “chronic laminitis”
Strong Moment, Jul 16, racing – “catastrophic injury…euthanized on the course”
Pleasure Luck, Jul 18, racing (euthanized Jul 19) – “took a bad step”
Fattoria, Jul 19, training – “pelvic injury necessitating euthanasia”
Fiya, Jul 31, training – “injury to RH leg…euthanized”
Butter Lou, Aug 5, racing – “injured after wire, vanned to barn, euthanized”
Fifth Avenue Red, Aug 7, training – “pulled up, vanned off, euthanized”
Volpaia, Aug 10, training – “fell over rail, multiple injuries, euthanized”
Olympico, Aug 21, training – “RH condylar injury”
Wasn’t Me, Aug 26, training – “possible heart attack” (two years old)
America’s Joy, Aug 29, training – “fracture while breezing, broke neck in fall”
Tivoli Twirl, Sep 5, stall – “euthanized due to severe health complications”
Cirona, Sep 10, training – “pulled up lame, suspected pelvic…euthanized”
Madrone, Oct 8, stall – “neurologic disorder…euthanized due to poor prognosis”

Not that anyone reading should need it, but here is further motivation to sign and share this petition to shutter Camarero in Puerto Rico. Yes, it is graphic – practically unwatchable. If you do, however, get to the end, I’d be curious to know whether you have the same bad thoughts as I toward the people just milling about as this horse suffers and dies. How humans lose their way – their (innate) compassion, their hearts, nay, their souls – is one for the psychologists and sociologists. (While I do know that this death occurred at Camarero, I cannot, unfortunately, provide any other details.)