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Number of horses killed or badly injured while racing in 2006, 2007

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  • Number of horses killed or badly injured while racing in 2006, 2007

    Does anyone have any figures of how many horses were put down or injured while racing in 2006-2007?

  • #2
    I don't. But considering the number of tracks, races (flat and steeplechasing?), and racehorses just in this country alone, I would think hundreds, at least, were put down or died racing in 06 and 07 combined. Probably not a huge percentage, but too many none the less. Who knows how many were injured, that would be really hard to keep track of and how would you define injured?.

    Although individual tracks might have records, I think I read somewhere there is no official record kept for those statistics, I could be wrong on both counts.
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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Showpony View Post
      I don't. But considering the number of tracks, races (flat and steeplechasing?), and racehorses just in this country alone, I would think hundreds, at least, were put down or died racing in 06 and 07 combined. Probably not a huge percentage, but too many none the less. Who knows how many were injured, that would be really hard to keep track of and how would you define injured?.

      Although individual tracks might have records, I think I read somewhere there is no official record kept for those statistics, I could be wrong on both counts.
      Flat tracks and seriously injured.

      Comment


      • #4
        There have been recent studies on this to compare synthetics with dirt. I don't know the number off hand but I think its reported on # injured horses per 1000 horses. Bloodhorse and others reported the findings and um, correction. I am sure it's easy to look up.

        Comment


        • #5
          I've seen different figures posted for the number of fatalities per 1000 start. I'm not sure if there is one definitive number as there is no central clearing house for this info.
          There were 421,340 total starts in the US in 2007 (420,003 on the flat and 1,337 over fences) if you want to try and work backwards.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Thanks.

            Comment


            • #7
              I believe that I read in one of the threads here that there were 1.5 catastrophic (fatal) injuries per 1000 starts on dirt tracks. Where they have installed synthetic tracks, such injuries have been dramatically lessened. This was from a report put out by the NY Racing Board, or some other concerned NY agency. There were many more less serious injuries.

              Scratch my first sentence. I just found this in an AP news article about the breakdown:

              Reports by veterinarians at 34 tracks across the country between June 2007 and early this year showed synthetic tracks averaged 1.47 fatalities per 1,000 starts, compared with 2.03 fatalities per 1,000 starts for horses that ran on dirt.

              So the synthetic tracks are avoiding about 25% of fatalities per 1000 starts when compared to dirt tracks. If we knew how many races are held, we could figure out how many horses were saved during that time period.
              Last edited by I'm EBO; May. 5, 2008, 01:22 AM.
              Barbaro Cultist, Metabolic Nazi

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by I'm EBO View Post
                I believe that I read in one of the threads here that there were 1.5 catastrophic (fatal) injuries per 1000 starts on dirt tracks. Where they have installed synthetic tracks, such injuries have been dramatically lessened. This was from a report put out by the NY Racing Board, or some other concerned NY agency. There were many more less serious injuries.

                Scratch my first sentence. I just found this in an AP news article about the breakdown:

                Reports by veterinarians at 34 tracks across the country between June 2007 and early this year showed synthetic tracks averaged 1.47 fatalities per 1,000 starts, compared with 2.03 fatalities per 1,000 starts for horses that ran on dirt.

                So the synthetic tracks are avoiding about 25% of fatalities per 1000 starts when compared to dirt tracks. If we knew how many races are held, we could figure out how many horses were saved during that time period.
                I think someone posted above over 400,000 starts in 2007. That would be roughly equal to 800 deaths for that number of starts, or between 2 and 3 per day which is what I had roughly believed the nationwide stat to be for racing related deaths.

                But that does (presumably) not include deaths in the morning. Horses also sustain life-ending.catastrophic inuries in morning works and even gallops - do these numbers include those deaths? I don't know...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by I'm EBO View Post
                  I believe that I read in one of the threads here that there were 1.5 catastrophic (fatal) injuries per 1000 starts on dirt tracks. Where they have installed synthetic tracks, such injuries have been dramatically lessened. This was from a report put out by the NY Racing Board, or some other concerned NY agency. There were many more less serious injuries.

                  Scratch my first sentence. I just found this in an AP news article about the breakdown:

                  Reports by veterinarians at 34 tracks across the country between June 2007 and early this year showed synthetic tracks averaged 1.47 fatalities per 1,000 starts, compared with 2.03 fatalities per 1,000 starts for horses that ran on dirt.

                  So the synthetic tracks are avoiding about 25% of fatalities per 1000 starts when compared to dirt tracks. If we knew how many races are held, we could figure out how many horses were saved during that time period.
                  I think someone posted above over 400,000 starts in 2007. That would be roughly equal to 800 deaths for that number of starts, or between 2 and 3 per day which is what I had roughly believed the nationwide stat to be for racing related deaths.

                  But that does (presumably) not include deaths in the morning. Horses also sustain life-ending.catastrophic inuries in morning works and even gallops - do these numbers include those deaths? I don't know...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by regret View Post
                    Does anyone have any figures of how many horses were put down or injured while racing in 2006-2007?
                    Yes.

                    The Jockey Club in the UK and your race regulators over there.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Here is a blog on the topic-

                      http://scrollsequus.blogspot.com/

                      And from another link, the numbers in Britain seem to be monitored here

                      http://www.horsedeathwatch.com/

                      the second link covers steeplechasing not flat racing

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Dr. Mary Scollay-Ward is currently leading efforts to formalize a racing injury reporting system in the U.S. Here is a summary of the injury reporting program, I believe it has just concluded its first year

                        http://www.grayson-jockeyclub.org/ne...track_form.ppt
                        *Absolut Equestrian*

                        "The plural of anecdote is not fact...except in the horse industry"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          the information is very new and incomplete....speaking with a large number of vets,the poly is not a saving grace....there is a positive increase in soft tissue injuries,and carreer ending injuries....time will tell..but i think it will be very discouraging....horses are animals,they need a natural surface......is there no common sense left in the industry ?????

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Turf seems to me to be the best answer we have so far. I believe that the problem with turf is that the pace is slower--although I don't know how much slower. I don't get why they have to approach warpspeed anyhow; spectators/bettors seem to be plenty entertained at the trotter races.

                            Another thing is that turf courses in North America seem to be shorter than dirt tracks. Does anyone have information to the contrary, or a reason for the shorter courses?
                            Barbaro Cultist, Metabolic Nazi

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              They don't count all the deaths

                              But you see, the figures that the racing industry gives you only counts the starts--of races. They do not show the number of horses injured daily and put down at the track while training. So you need to go to the track and see a horse breakdown and die. You need to watch and you will see horrible falls while galloping, because the horses are run too young on too hard surfaces and are worked too fast and too much. And of course they are bread with legs that cannot stand up to the impact of daily stress. Then they are "buted up" and run on stress fractures till they shatter. Get a picture of the xray of Barbaro's leg--that is a shattered leg, as though he were hit by an 18 wheeler, but it broke like that while he was running because he was bred to have legs like that--and people on this forum are touting his full brothers to be "just like him" - I hope not.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by cloudyandcallie View Post
                                But you see, the figures that the racing industry gives you only counts the starts--of races. They do not show the number of horses injured daily and put down at the track while training. So you need to go to the track and see a horse breakdown and die. You need to watch and you will see horrible falls while galloping
                                Just curious, at what track(s) are you seeing horses having "horrible falls while galloping"?

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  tracks

                                  churchill downs, the track right across from st. louis, over in illinois, forget the name, and tracks in maryland and pennsylvania. I've lived in all those states, and frequented those tracks. try it sometime.
                                  never saw any killed training in florida though cause I only visited there on race days. ditto california.
                                  oh the pennsylvania track was a training track, the horses raced elsewhere.
                                  forgot, saw the "breakdowns" in Louisiana also.
                                  Last edited by cloudyandcallie; May. 5, 2008, 05:28 PM. Reason: forgot Louisiana

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    more

                                    and I am not against racing....I think it should be regulated to have older horses racing and less use of bute......when horses are galloping on a dirt track and break a leg cause they have a stress fracture but have been buted up to run, then they breakdown. Racing needs to be changed and our Derby should be for 4 or 5 year olds. but the $$$ issue requires horses to be raced as 2 or 3 year olds. disposable and expendable.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I once did a search on this, even posted what I found.... something like 2.2 per 1000 for Penn National, 2.6 (I think) for Philly....but, in comparison, like with flying, we only hear/see about the wrecks...not the millions of uneventful successes.
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                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Dirt v. turf

                                        <<I believe that the problem with turf is that the pace is slower--although I don't know how much slower. I don't get why they have to approach warpspeed anyhow; spectators/bettors seem to be plenty entertained at the trotter races.

                                        Another thing is that turf courses in North America seem to be shorter than dirt tracks. Does anyone have information to the contrary, or a reason for the shorter courses?>>


                                        The main problem racetrack operators here in the US have with turf courses versus dirt is that it is far, far harder to maintain and more susceptible to the weather, as you would imagine. You can't run long meets on turf courses, and US racing--to its detriment, in my view--is based largely on long, long meets, as compared to the 2-4 day meets that are usual at British tracks (exceptions are Keeneland and Saratoga and Del Mar, but even those are multi-week meets, not multi-day ones). Those long, dirt meets hark back to US racing's expansion in the 1930s, when state governments--still major stakeholders in racetracks in every state--built tracks as a revenue stream; they make money on every bet wagered, and longer meets provided a more reliable and steady stream of that revenue. Dirt tracks, being easier to maintain and more durable, were the choice material for that purpose.

                                        In the UK, operators are also frustrated with the difficulties and expense of maintaining turf, which is the reason there are now synthetic tracks over there, too. You can imagine how hard it is to maintain delicate turf in UK weather! If you've ever had someone ride or drive over your lawn after a rainstorm you'll get the picture: divots, uneven spots, etc., that take time and effort to "heal" and return to a safe surface. Personally, I love turf racing, and I'd prefer that we run racing in the European style, but the above are some of the issues that caused US racing to develop differently, with long meets on dirt instead of short ones on turf.

                                        As for turf courses v. dirt tracks in terms of length, traditionally in the US turf courses are built on the inside of dirt ones, but turf races in the US generally are longer in distance than dirt races are.

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