As the Woodbine thoroughbred season begins once again, I think it is a good time for all horse racing fans to take some time to consider the fate of our racehorses when they are no longer productive.
I feel fortunate to be associated with a racetrack that takes good care of their horses by supporting organizations like the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society and LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society. Woodine's support of these organizations helps keep our former racing stars cared for and away from the slippery slope of neglect that leads many horses to slaughter.
Alex Brown, exercise rider extraordinaire for Steve Asmussen's stable, is someone who stands up on behalf of neglected horses and has worked tirelessly in his pursuit to eliminate horse slaughter. In February, Brown launched his Youtube Horse Slaughter Contest, challenging the public to submit videos that take a stand against horse slaughter. There are now 15 videos available to be viewed on the contest page and each one has its own unique perspective.
Please take a look at this excellent entry from the Hoboken Mounted Police Force:
These officers have not only helped to save horses from slaughter, they have given their horses a new purpose in life where they can contribute to society in a meaningful way.
Despite best efforts, not all horses can be saved and the video below provided by Another Chance For Horses demonstrates, with before and after photos, the stark contrast in health of horses from their money making time on the track to the neglected state in which ACFH recovered the horses.
The intent of this contest is not to discuss an extreme animal rights perspective, but rather to promote a caring healthy life cycle for racehorses and put an end to the practice of horse slaughter. Brown discusses this issue at length in his essay, Deconstructing The Horse Slaughter Issue.
The winning video will have $1000 donated to the rescue organization of their choice. If you have the tools, please take the time to add your entry to this ambitious and important contest. Your statement on this issue could be the one that changes the mind of those in a position to affect change. If you cannot make your own video, please do your best to visit each entry and make your vote in support of the organization that you feel best presented their case. As well, I encourage you to donate to any of the wonderful racing related charity organizations linked in the right margin of this blog.
The Youtube Horse Slaughter Contest closes April 10, 2009. I have linked all 15 of the current entries below.
1. Horse Heroes - Stop Horse Slaughter
2. Please Stop Horse Slaughter
3. Another Chance: Saved from Horse Slaughter
4. End Horse Slaughter
5. No More Horse Slaughter
6. Horse Play - Saving Horses From Slaughter
7. Horse Slaughter: Our Forgotten Veterans Deserve Better
8. Harley's Saddle
9. The Antidote to Horse Slaughter
10. Montana, Big Sky Horse Slaughter Country
11. Saving Thoroughbreds from Horse Slaughter
12. Do They Deserve it? ~Horse Slaughter
13. The Faces of Horse Slaughter
14. Saved From Horse Slaughter and Going Home
15. Thoroughbreds saved from horse slaughter by AC4H
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As mentioned in yesterday's post, I am representing Triple Dead Heat in the PRO section of Woodbine's FREE Queen's Plate Fantasy Challenge. This morning, I was forced to change one of my picks after reading a report on Jennifer Morrison's Thoroughblog,that Van Lear Rose was injured in training and will not race in the 2009 season.
Van Lear Rose has been replaced in my stable with Roger Attfield's unraced, but well bred, colt Southdale.
*Active Duty - Casse - P. Husbands - 10
Square Eddie - O'Neill - R. Bejerano - 5-2
Utterly Cool - Sid Attard - Dos Ramos - 6
Parabola - Minshall - Stein - 15
El Brujo - Pierce - Wilson - 12
Keino West - St. Attard - Olguin - 15
Mean Green - Sid Attard - Jones 20
Flip For The Coin - V. Armata - 20
Air Strike - Casse - Husbands - 25
Southdale - Attfield - ? - 40
Group 1 Jockey - P. Husbands
Group 2 Jockey - J. Stein
Group 3 Jockey - D. David
Group 1 Trainer - M. Casse
Group 2 Trainer - Steve Attard
Group 3 Trainer - Jimmy Day
I invite everyone to join me in the Queen's Plate Fantasy Challenge. The winner will receive a grand prize of a $5,000 HPI deposit or cash voucher. Good luck!