After yesterday's post, I was reading about some of the races only to find that the competition was marred by tragedy after all.
Rough Sailing a 2 year old in the Juvenile Turf race slipped on the turn and fell. He broke the humerus in his foreleg and had to be euthanized. His jockey was shaken up but uninjured.
As I said yesterday, I am not a huge fan of horse racing, and this kind of thing definitely puts me off. When I was younger and the Triple Crown races were run--or I went to the track with my parents to see the horses, it was fun. I think we may have gone to the now closed Atlantic City Racecourse perhaps twice for an outing. I, of course, could not bet, but just seeing the magnificent horses was enough for me.
Later, when I was older, I went to the track a few times as well, placing my two dollar bets and winning pennies if my horse came in and losing no more than the $20 I'd alloted for the day. I never thought about the price the horses often paid.
But I'm not sure many people did back then. It's only recently with the high profile loss of horses like Barbaro that caused the outside world to start noticing the statistics. And it's only been recently--with the advent of the Internet--that people began to notice the discarded horses out there. The horses too slow, or too broken to run any more. I'm sure there were rescues around "back then," but now the world is flooded with them.
Some of the tracks here in the USA have rules that ban owners/trainers who send horses off to auction instead of placing them in safe environments. Many breeders are starting to offer to take back any horses they bred once their careers are over.
Little by little, the world of horse racing is trying to right itself.
But accidents still happen and, unfortunately, far too often the horses are the ones to pay.