Times expose notwithstanding, troubling figures at NYRA

7 thoughts on “Times expose notwithstanding, troubling figures at NYRA”

  1. Sid,
    The Times use of “incidents” is flawed data, is it not? An incident could have been a DNF, lost rider, bled, eased or broken equipment as well as a “broke down” comment from the charts. Clearly most of these chart comments are not fatalities. Too many people believe if it’s in the paper it has to be true. The Times has a recent history of distorting or making up “the truth”. I wish the Times had written this story in conjunction with you.

  2. Hi Sid,
    Are any of these horses insured ? I would be courious to see if the horses breaking down and then put down were covered by insurance claims. We need to do a better job of preventing unsound horses from starting in a race. The public once again is the person being taken advantage of. What about the jockeys ? They are also caught right in the middle of all this. The public is only losing their money but the jockeys can lose their lives.

  3. I’m obviously not trying to defend breakdowns or ignore negligent or unscrupulous behavior. But I agree with Observer that the data seemed to lump lots of other incidents, at least some significant percentage of which are surely irrelevant, into “incidents” that imply breakdowns in order to inflate the numbers.

  4. I think the data was OK as “incidents,” not to be confused with hard numbers of fatalities, but my biggest issue w the piece was its sensational tack and it’s lack of full understanding of subject matter. Except for Joe Drape, I doubt the other four writers knew much about racing, and they were attempting something for which they were seriously unqualified.

  5. I completely agree. Unfortunately, the fact that most major racetracks take great precautions to insure the safety of horses is not a very sexy story.

    Aqueduct races horses that come from bloodlines that are more fragile. Belmont and Saratoga race sturdier stock. This is what accounts for 80% of
    the discrepancy in breakdowns between the tracks. Some bloodlines are more injury prone than others.

  6. Issues concerning the effects of diuretics and painkillers are profusely published, as are arguements over pedigree. It is absurd that stock from the phosphatic limestone districts of the bluegrass, the Nashville basin, and New Market etc., are touted for sound bone, and then routinely dosed with chemicals which remobilize bone calcium with resultant osteopenia. Even so, horsemen who have forgotten more than I know, point to dangerously high stirrup placement in particular, and and lack of horsemanship in general as being as much a cause as drugs for these problems. This is part and parcel to the industrial specialization of skills and loss of folk wisdom, such that a sidehill farmer a century ago, had infinitely more horse sense than most of the hobbyists and mercenaries of today and nevermind the shrill polemicists who shriek for attention like jealous tots.

  7. Well said Jim.. well said.. todays short riding irons is ridiculous, did you see that French jockey standing almost on the horse’s back before the finish of the World Cup.. if he had fallen off, he would have brought down half of the field.

    The Epsom stewards had already fined him for doing that show of nonsense in the Derby.

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