BARBARO Rules / petition for rules & regulations to protect horses doomed to race tracks

  • by: Marlene Friedman
  • recipient: Alan Marzelli, President & COO, The Jockey Club
It will take many years for me to overcome the tragedy of Barbaro, but with the Preakness, I have watched my last race.  It is purely for man's profit that these magnificent, fragile creatures are pushed beyond their limit.  George Vescey ("Racing Can't Afford More Tragedies," The Times, June 6) asks when animal rights' group are going to speak out against this human (NOT humane) narcissim.  I ask the same question and mourn the loss of Barbaro.

and for those of all the 'neigh sayers' out there ..... Eight Belles is another example of just how barberic racing is ... how many more hints do you need?  It's a message, loud & clear.

            A RUN FOR THE ROSES, is a run for their lives, sadly

The horse racing industry advertises itself as, "glamorous," but in reality, exploitation, welfare violations, cruelty, and premature deaths are an inherent and unavoidable part of this industry based on greed.  Last year, 57,495 races were run in the United States and Canada for a total of 469,644 race starts, according to stats compiled by the Jockey Club.  That means, 704 horses died while racing in 2005 in the United States and Canada.  Those numbers DO NOT include any horses that break down in training.

The injuries they suffer are frequent because they are forced to train and race before their skeletal systems are finished growing. To compete in races with the large purses, which are for 2 and 3 year olds, horses must be trained and raced at too young an age.  This caused many lower-limb injuries, including fractures, pulled ligaments, and strained tendons.  All such injuries are common in racing.

                                (why we care ... or not, Pat Ford, ESPN)

After Racing, horses are often euthanized or;

   ~sold from one owner to another, for increasingly worse 

   ~killed for human consumption overseas.

   ~Used to produce glue

murdered by their "owners" who then file
     fraudulent insurance claims.

Horses are forced to race even while injured, causing enormous suffering.  Since the profit-making motive, NOT animal welfare, is the priority, the horses are made dependent on the drugs that their veterinarians and trainers provide.  While the drugs may relieve symptoms such as bleeding and pain, they do not treat the underlying problems.  Instead, they are used to keep horses who are too injured to race on the track.  Legal drugs are also used to mask the presence of illegal drugs injected into the horse.

BARBARO, had many leg issues prior to his breakdown that were ignored, including in the post parade, (Ken Woodall, Public Handicapper for Thoroughbred racing)

Sally Mullis, who was the farm's barn foreman while Barbaro was there, recalls; 
As a yearling, Barbaro pulled tendons in a leg that was fitted for a splint.

BARBARO, was dead before he reached his 4th Birthday, (4/29/03).

Jockey's whip their horses as many as 30 times during one race.  The whip is used even on young horses, during thier first race.  Horses is a state of total exhaustion and already out of contention are also beaten.   The whip is used on the neck and shoulders as well as the hind end.

Horseracing is effectively excluded from all anti-cruelty laws.  Individual states are supposed to be regulating the industry through their own racing commissions, except for Florida, which has no racing commission.  Since the racing commission is a state agency, state prosecutors are disinclined toward pursuing curelty cases against it. Moreover, because each state receives revenue from its tracks, states are unlikely to hold industry insiders to very strict standards.

Summary of Petition:

The purpose of this petition is to bring about safety rules and regulations for the horse racing industry. Currently, there are millions of dollars being spent and donated for the purpose of making horse racing safer, safer for the Jockeys and safer for the back barn helpers but NOT for the horses. If it weren’t for the horses there would be no horse races. IF the industry would truly assert itself in HORSE safety, it would result in safety for not only the horses, but the jockeys and all Personnel involved with handling all phases of horse racing.

The Jockey Club, an Organization that prides itself on “the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding,” needs to be held accountable, not to its executives, employees and their bank accounts, but to the horses, the beautiful, living creatures that make it all possible. If confronted about horse safety issues, they all run for cover behind, The Grayson~Jockey Club Research Foundation, Inc., “A leading non-profit charitable foundation committed to the advancement of research to enhance the health and soundness of horses of all breeds.”

Grayson is funded thru donations but primarily through The Jockey Club. ALTHOUGH, most of the research has already been done by THE most leading Vets and Authorities, (which is all documented), NO ONE HAS DONE ANYTHING to implement any of the recommended changes … thus, they talk the talk (for the $$$) and do nothing to lessen the odds in favor of any horse’s safety. Think replacing the track surface is TRULY for the horse’s well-being? Don’t believe it … it cost much less to maintain .. Thus, more profits for the greedy!

The loss of Barbaro to the barbaric sport of horse racing shall not be a life or death in vain. Even the ‘Winners’ Lose.

Barbaro, captured the hearts of millions, all over the World. We saw him win the Kentucky Derby, and witnessed his untimely break from the gate. Tragically, before the eyes of the World, Barbaro was taken away in an ambulance with hopes he would be saved, which he was, only to be put to sleep due to various complications. Barbaro, not only captured our hearts, he captured our attention and now it's time ... it's about time, to do something for those before him and those that will follow.

Please forward this petition to all local, state and federal politicians .... all news agencies, publications, both online and off.

NOT to forget .... forward this petition to all your animal loving friends, especially to those who support horse racing, not fully knowing what each horse sacrifices each & every time it steps on any race track.


proposed rules along with links of interest are listed below the signature list.
want to post your thoughts? click above for our forum

PLEASE, don't forget to sign and then comment,
thank you, all of you,
from all of us!

We are petitioning for the following, which represents a start and should be over all racing jurisdictions.

National Drug Standards of drug restrictions to         regulate and control any and all drugs administered to horses at the track for racing and or training.  

No more use of whips while at the track on or with any horse.

No more use of shoes with toe grabs, regardless of the size on any horse while at the track for racing and or training.

No horses allowed on the track for racing and or training until they reach    (the chronological) age of 5.

All horses on the track for racing and or training to be Vet checked by an independent, accredited, licensed Vet for fitness and checked for all drugs.

All tracks need to conform and convert their gates to the optimum size that will be confirmed by a leading, independent authority (to be determined).    

Most of these above issues have been addressed by one leading authority or accomplished Professional in their field.  The following are a few of the links to articles.
    Horse shoes & safety/Dr. Larry Bramlage
    Training issues/Dr. David Nunamaker, Orthopedic Surgeon, U of Penn
    The horror behind the glamour
Here's additional links for your reading interest concerning horse racing
and the danger it has created for the horses:
Here are some links that will be of interest to you:

Please sign our petition and AVOID any contributions to the horse racing industry until those in power get with us and help those that are paying their bills and sending their kids through school.  

These rules can be a start …  for Barbaro, the people’s horse.
                             BARBARO rules!
                                           Whose death won’t be in vain.

                                                    ~A WINNER THAT LOST~

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