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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beverley View Post
    Nobody JUSTIFIES horses breaking down. Everybody hates it. The industry does what it can,...
    I think this is what people disagree with. A lot of people don't think the industry is doing all it can. C'mon, didn't you get a twinge when prior to the race they were talking about how huge Eight Belles was, and that she was maybe bigger than Winning Colors, and the other one said, yes, she's bigger, but she doesn't have as much weight, she's taller. And I'm sure there were people who thought omgosh, 17hh and just turned 3.....and about to pound down a racetrack in a pack of 20 horses...

    Quote Originally Posted by Beverley View Post
    For those who say they are done with racing- are you done with driving cars, too? Because, despite continual safety improvements over the years, lots of people die in cars every day.

    Ah, yes, you'll say, well, that's our choice, the 'poor race horse' has no choice. To which I respond, LOOK AT THE HORSES! Do they look unhappy to you?
    That's why it's so crushing. The horses are happy because they're well cared for. But even being well cared for, the "poor race horse" does have NO choice. They're happy until both their ankles break and they fall to the ground.

    Look, I agree with zagafi that the OP worded the post specifically to be inflammatory. But that doesn't negate the argument, which is that there is disagreement that the industry is "doing all it can" and the you-still-drive-cars argument is totally not the same thing.

    And as inflammatory as the post was, you can just look at some of the other threads and see all the people saying "that's it, I'm done." This was hard. And it's not just racing. Go to the front page of this week's COH and the first two items are the euths of The Quiet Man and Frodo Baggins, both casualties of this year's Rolex. Three big, wonderful "well cared for" horses all dying within one week! C'mon, it's denial to not think all this shook up an awful lot of people.

    Edited to add: Looking further down the same page of the online COH, two of the other items are the euthanization of Task Force (Southern Pines Horse Trials) and TWO MORE horse fatalities at Red Hills. Again, not racing, but all this piled up together in a VERY brief period of time is a big red flag. I've been with everybody else saying, it's just a run of bad luck, but as the years roll on the the deaths don't decrease.......pick ANY other sport involving animals, ANY one (besides bullfighting) and think if there were deaths in the biggest, most popular events in that sport, what would happen?
    Last edited by Anne FS; May. 3, 2008 at 09:45 PM.



  2. #22
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    Sing Mia, I think the OP is just bitter against many things. It sort of comes across as all of us who are in the sporthorse business are cruel murderers.

    I don't think any of us are saying "oh, it's okay, it happens all the time and is normal," then just passing it off. We're saying this sucks, is horrid, shouldn't happen, and should be further studied to make improvements. A good deal of that DOES lie in the breeder's responsibility, but people like the OP just want to take aim and call all of the industry murderous fiends.
    "IT'S NOT THE MOUNTAIN WE CONQUER, BUT OURSELVES." SIR EDMUND HILLARYMember of the "Someone Special To Me Serves In The Military" Clique



  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenike View Post
    Sing Mia, I think the OP is just bitter against many things. It sort of comes across as all of us who are in the sporthorse business are cruel murderers.

    I don't think any of us are saying "oh, it's okay, it happens all the time and is normal," then just passing it off. We're saying this sucks, is horrid, shouldn't happen, and should be further studied to make improvements. A good deal of that DOES lie in the breeder's responsibility, but people like the OP just want to take aim and call all of the industry murderous fiends.
    Actually, there is a quote on the Eight Belles thread saying that although this is tragic, "ITs the nature of the sport....Horses break down, and die. it happens more than anyone sees or hears about it. You not watching it is not going to stop it from happening." To me, that means some people are ok with status quo and don't think it can be or needs to be improved. And that is sad.



  4. #24
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    well, this is the first time I've alerted the mods. I don't care so much about the content, but the double posting just to start trouble was pretty dumb.
    "IT'S NOT THE MOUNTAIN WE CONQUER, BUT OURSELVES." SIR EDMUND HILLARYMember of the "Someone Special To Me Serves In The Military" Clique



  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLBGP View Post
    Actually, there is a quote on the Eight Belles thread saying that although this is tragic, "ITs the nature of the sport....Horses break down, and die. it happens more than anyone sees or hears about it. You not watching it is not going to stop it from happening." To me, that means some people are ok with status quo and don't think it can be or needs to be improved. And that is sad.
    I think that you are misinterpreting the intent of that statement. There are a great many people working every day to make racing safer for horses and for the jockeys. Nobody is okay with the status quo. Everybody supports improvements in welfare and safety. What they are is frustrated when unreasonable and uninformed people say that nothing is being done!

    I will continue to support racing. And I remember how sick to my stomach I was the day that Ruffian broke down. And I will continue to hope for safety improvements- recognizing full well that horses will continue to break down, anyway. Contrary to the way our society seems to think today- that somebody is to be blamed for each thing that goes wrong- accidents do happen in spite of best intentions and best efforts.



  6. #26
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    Exactly what Beverley said

    (except for the Ruffian part....I was only a couple months old then)
    "IT'S NOT THE MOUNTAIN WE CONQUER, BUT OURSELVES." SIR EDMUND HILLARYMember of the "Someone Special To Me Serves In The Military" Clique



  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by cloudyandcallie View Post
    Eight Belles was not "injured" as the TV people say. She was murdered by the racing industry which insists on running TBs too young on too hard surfaces too fast. Barbaro and Eight Belles and Ruffian and Go For Wand, wasn't she the one who broke a leg in the Breeder's Cub Distaff along with 2 other horses dying in Breeder's Cup races that day? And every day in training horses break their legs at tracks all over the country. But it is not convenient financially to wait till horses are 4 or 5, and train them on turf and run them on turf. So the racing industry will continue to kill and kill, and the unknowing public will be told about "missteps" and "injuries" and continue to romanticize horse racing. My mare survived 3 yrs on the track, and amazingly was sound. Go watch horse racing for a few days at any track, and watch the horses "break down". Let's see, what if we bred horses with gasp, bigger bones, and not those llittle spindly legs, and if we waited till their bones developed and matured??? nahhh, racing cannot be bothered with that.
    I couldn't agree with you more.

    These poor babies die so that people can win money.

    They say, Oh we can't wait until they're older because then they won't run as fast and it won't be as exciting....plus, it costs too much money to raise a horse until they are 5 only to realize that they won't make it on the track......

    I F-ING HATE horse racing and all the people that cheer it on.



  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenike View Post
    well, this is the first time I've alerted the mods. I don't care so much about the content, but the double posting just to start trouble was pretty dumb.
    Me too. Sent my little alert happily!

    However, I do care a bit about the content but not enough to get involved with someone who CLEARLY has no clue what they are talking about.
    Lord Stanely, Lord Stanley - come back to Pittsburgh!!!
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  9. #29
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    The OP has a right to be furious and upset. I admit that when I see "bad stuff" on tv I just shrug it off and go on. But when I saw Eight Belles break down I choked. We've raised a lot of babies on this farm, and I know how BABYISH they are at 2. They are just punkins, playing in their field, sleeping in the sun, and doing goofy goofy baby things. To see 2 year olds at the absolute pinacle of their career makes my heart ache.

    I did an 11 mile run on my endurance horse today and she felt so fit and strong. I never urged her at all. I just let the canter and gallop strides unfold under me and it's such a feeling. But at 2, she was nowhere even CLOSE to being ready to gallop under the weight of a rider. No way. No how. I didn't sit on her till 3 1/2.

    After watching the race I had to go out in the field and hug my mares and cry a couple tears. I actually felt sick thinking about that breakdown today. The waste of such an incredible baby filly is heartwrenching. I have loved our babies so much and enjoyed watching them grow, and mature.

    Our OTTB died young last year with more problems than Carter had liver pills. That poor mare. She had over 40 starts and quite an impressive record. But her bones and feet were a nightmare. She was a nervous MESS. She would suck her tongue and shake/sweat profusely at any tiny thing that upset her. Her poor brain was cooked. It took years for her to "come down" from the track. What the industry does to these horses is absolutely beyond my comprehension.

    I agree that a good running horse has it in their heart and soul to run. I don't ask my endurance horse to run. She just offers it because it's in her blood and her heart. And BECAUSE of this, it is up to US, as their guardians to be intelligent enough to know when to ask for all they've got, and when to let them be babies.



  10. #30
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    nobody likes a dead horse. I mourn Eight Belles, and Barbaro, and Pine Island, etc. I don't like the fact that it's getting difficult to watch a big day of racing lately.
    However, let's try to keep this in perspective.
    Not trying to start a flaming war here, but let's remember that in sheer numbers, the number of TBs that have to be put down each year because of breakdowns on the track pales in comparison to the number of QH and other stock-type breeds that go to slaughter every year because they are overbred.
    There is enough blame to go around in every discipline, and every breed. In this particular case---I think the connections of Eight Belles gave her the best care and training possible. It was a freak accident, heartbreaking as it is.



  11. #31
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    What troubled me most was how the filly's death was just sort of glossed over in the news coverage. If this had been the Super Bowl and one of the star players had dropped dead on the field, it would have been a huge story. The filly's breakdown and euthanasia was just brushed off as "ill-fated." She was just an animal after all. And there were all those hats and dresses to photograph.

    I am sure that many people in racing were truly devastated by her death, and I know many of the people in racing care deeply about their charges. Still, I am disillusioned. And very sad.



  12. #32
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    They are born and bred to run, they love it . If not for racing they would not be. If you don't like it don't watch. Go save a seal or a tree.



  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by LegoMyMego View Post
    I couldn't agree with you more.

    These poor babies die so that people can win money.

    They say, Oh we can't wait until they're older because then they won't run as fast and it won't be as exciting....plus, it costs too much money to raise a horse until they are 5 only to realize that they won't make it on the track......

    I F-ING HATE horse racing and all the people that cheer it on.
    Then get out of this board and go away.

    Nothing I hate more than the naysayers flocking to tragedies - be it eventing or racing. Something disastrous happens and suddenly we have tons of people running over to put their .02 in, criticize, and point fingers. The people who 'only turn on the TV to watch the Derby/Rolex/*insert big name event*.

    I love this sport. I love the horses, the people, the stories behind them all. The hopes and dreams that are such a part of this sport beyond any other. Above all I love the horses who run their hearts out for the sheer joy of it.

    So go take your negativity somewhere else. We - the people involved, those who love the horses, the fans, the connections especially - are all hurting over this. We do not need people like you coming over.
    *The Quietman ~ Irish Approved Gr.1 Stallion
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  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sing Mia Song View Post
    ....before going off half-cocked?
    Half??? More like 1/100th........

    I grew up in KY. I have EARLY memories of the KY derby... parties, watching it on TV, going to Lexington and seeing the farms.

    Sadly the race horse economy will not be stopped. We were watching the race while at a restaurant and it made me sick when I read the work "euthanized" in the close captioning just after the race.

    Instead of being negative and spewing your vile opinions, how about focusing that energy on helping?
    www.foxwoodfarms.biz
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  15. #35
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    I wish people like the OP would not make blanket opinions that simplify that which is not and cannot be simple.

    RIP Eight Belles. She was a beautiful filly that ran her heart out today. It's obvious that she will be greatly missed by those who knew and loved her and my condolences go out to them.

    And as an avid Football fan I have to disagree with this comment:
    Quote Originally Posted by LarkspurCO View Post
    What troubled me most was how the filly's death was just sort of glossed over in the news coverage. If this had been the Super Bowl and one of the star players had dropped dead on the field, it would have been a huge story.
    Umm, no it wasn't glossed over IMO. They had the vet comment right away, they continued to mention her even right before the winner's ceremony. And I saw a few serious injuries in football this year and they ALWAYS cut to commercial and keep the news veiled and only gave brief updates on sportscenter, so although I'm upset too, and would like something to blame when things like this happen, I have to dissagree that the media "covered it up".
    "Bold Words was classier than all his competition. Straighter knees and a slim, elegant neck." -Nan Mooney My Racing Heart



  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Granada View Post
    I wish people like the OP would not make blanket opinions that simplify that which is not and cannot be simple.

    RIP Eight Belles. She was a beautiful filly that ran her heart out today. It's obvious that she will be greatly missed by those who knew and loved her and my condolences go out to them.

    And as an avid Football fan I have to disagree with this comment:


    Umm, no it wasn't glossed over IMO. They had the vet comment right away, they continued to mention her even right before the winner's ceremony. And I saw a few serious injuries in football this year and they ALWAYS cut to commercial and keep the news veiled and only gave brief updates on sportscenter, so although I'm upset too, and would like something to blame when things like this happen, I have to dissagree that the media "covered it up".
    Umm, well IMO opinion, yes, it was glossed over during the NBC coverage. When they read the final results the announcer referred to Five Belles as "the ill-fated filly" that placed second. The next reference to her was "the injured filly." I did NOT say the media covered it up.

    If a Super Bowl player died on the field during the game, or seconds after the winning play, there would be some serious coverage right then and there, and I bet a delayed trophy ceremony as well.



  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by skatepixie View Post
    Yes, please do.

    Horses die in other sports, they die giving birth, they die in the paddock, they die all kinds of ways. The filly seemed to be doing fine, even slightly after the wire. No one murdered her...murder implies something intentional.

    Couldn't agree with this more. I have lost 2 foals in 2 years and quite wonder how they ever make it to racing. Every one of the horses we have sent out over the last few years come home sound without a pimple on them during the winter.

    I can maybe understand the OP's anger and he/she has a right to post what she wants, but it isn't so black and white.

    I feel for the connections of Eight Belles. She was an amazing filly.

    Terri
    COTH, keeping popcorn growers in business for years.

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  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flypony View Post
    They are born and bred to run, they love it . If not for racing they would not be. If you don't like it don't watch. Go save a seal or a tree.
    I keep hearing people say how the horses love to race. I call bullshit. That's just the kind of statement that fluff-bunny bleeding hearts always get called on for being anthropomorphic. You can't possibly know that a horse loves racing. How do you know he wouldn't rather be loafing around eating grass all day? They are big dumb animals and they are programmed to cooperate. It has nothing to do with "love." They're just trying to get along and survive.

    Do horses appear to enjoy running? I'd say yes. Do they often appear to adapt to the handling and lifestyle of the track? It would seem so. But then, what options do they have? Please spare me the whole "love" part though. If the horses "loved" it so much, then why do almost all of them have ulcers?

    My OTTB certainly appears to love galloping in the field. But I honestly can't tell you why he does it, or whether he does it because he loves it. I have a sense that he didn't love the things they did to him at the track. The lip chains, the ear twitching, the shanking, the needles, the stiff sore joints.

    If I had to guess, I would think he would have preferred to stand around with a bunch of mares eating grass. But then again, if it weren't for racing, he wouldn't be here, so let's all just pretend there aren't any problems.



  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seaborne View Post
    You know, I'm usually a lurker on this forum but I have to say from the heart that I am completely appalled at some of the replies on this thread, and at 43 I'm pretty hard to shock. I think these responses speak for themselves. Whether you agree with the original poster or not, whatever happened to manners and at least respecting another person's opinion? I feel truly, truly sad for the future of our sport tonight.
    I agree. Instead of circling the wagons, resolve to change the sport.

    Poor filly. She didn't deserve that. Makes you wonder if the industry even regards them as horses and not machines.



  20. #40
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    In light of Eight Belles' death, which is merely the latest fatal breakdown, I wonder if the US Racing World would consider not starting the horses so young? I think it would be an immensely popular move (speaking for the public, not trainers/jockeys/owners), and it isn't without precedent. European racehorses are started later, plus they run almost exclusively (or maybe all the time) on turf, which is apparently safer.

    I love to watch horse racing as long as nothing bad happens to the horses. I'd be a bigger fan if the industry could make changes that would benefit the horses rather than the bankrolls.
    Barbaro Cultist, Metabolic Nazi



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