Derby week: Piling on the bad press

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If horse racing was football, the refs would have run out of flags last week after calling countless “piling on” penalties.

We’ve gotten used to Derby Week being exploited by those who want to expose the bad side of racing taking advantage of the one time during the year that the general public pays attention to the sport.

But last week was ridiculous.

Politicians, the news media, animal rights groups and others all fought to get in the brief, flickering spotlight. Members of Congress, the New York Times, state and local politicians, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, even some miscreant individuals who used to be in the game took their shots.

The week that was began with a Congressional hearing in Kennett Square, Pa., where an eclectic panel of witnesses ranging from a wealthy Jockey Club member to a failed, bitter and confused trainer tried to portray racing as a game exploding with Thoroughbreds juiced to the gills with illegal, performance-enhancing drugs. It was a dog and pony show of the highest order.

On the morning of the April 30 hearing, the New York Times dropped its second bomb in just over a month, devoting considerable time and space to the issue of horse racing fatalities at tracks like Penn National and Aqueduct, where revenue from slot machines has led to a sharp increase in purses, especially for low-level claiming horses. One of the targets of the article, the former controversial horse owner Michael Gill, struck back on Kentucky Oaks day with a press release trying to discredit the criticism and throwing people at Penn National and the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission under the bus.

On the same day as the New York Times article on racing fatalities came a published report from the New York State Racing and Wagering Board suggesting New York Racing Association CEO Charles Hayward cheated horseplayers out of millions of dollars by knowingly violating racing law relative to the amount taken out of certain wagers. Hayward and another NYRA executive, Patrick Kehoe, were suspended and then terminated by week’s end.

A couple of days later, the New York attorney general’s office filed a lawsuit against the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation and members of its board of directors, alleging the charitable organization of misusing its funds, mistreating the horses in its care, and general incompetence.

Then PETA got in the act, citing but not releasing what its zealots called incriminating internal documents from the cancelled HBO series “LUCK,” and asking for someone to be punished for the death of three horses during the filming of the show. Talk about a beating a dead horse.

No one, it seems, was safe from the Derby week drama.

Then there was some self-inflicted bad news. The Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association and Arlington Park had a very bitter and public contract dispute that threatened the opening of the 2012 race meeting and could have shut millions of Illinois residents out of wagering on the Kentucky Derby. It was resolved at the last minute.

There also was the grim problem of jockey Robby Albarado being arrested for a second domestic abuse assault in just over a year on the eve of Derby weekend. And then, the morning after the Derby was run, security personnel discovered a murdered groom in the Churchill Downs stable area.

Despite all that bad news, some of it purely coincidental to the Kentuky Derby but most of designed to get maximum exposure during horse racing’s biggest week of the year, the game has survived, and maybe even thrived.

There were record crowds and record handle for both the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby. The television audience on NBC was greater than that of such major events as the Masters golf tournament or NASCAR’s premier event, the Daytona 500.

Perhaps Nietzsche was right: What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.

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  • PTP

    Nice post Bacon.

    When all eyes are on the race, everyone seems to crawl out for some shelf space.

    PTP

  • PTP

    Nice post Bacon.

    When all eyes are on the race, everyone seems to crawl out for some shelf space.

    PTP

  • Cepatton28

    The vultures are circling.  I hope the people in this industry that can change it for the better would get off their collective asses and try to find a solution.

    • Joe

      The solution is obvious. No need to try finding it! Change the culture. First and foremost, put the welfare and safety of horses (and their riders) first instead of money and power. Ban all drugs that are used to manipulate equine appearance and performance. Only medicate horses to offer genuine therapy well off-competition and publicly disclose equine medical records. Protect the rights of ethical horsemen to fair competition by protecting all horses against abuse and cheating including with drugs. Protect caring trainers (and their horses) by officially mandating rest and retirement of horses as needed. Perform off-competition soundness monitoring. Reform and shrink the claiming game: ban all tags under 5K, then 7,5K, 10K and keep raising the bar if needed, among other injury-prevention measures which beg to be implemented to save horses and “the game”.

      • Cepatton28

        The drug problem has very little to do with lasix and bute.   Most of in the business follow the guidelines to the letter even though the rules change state by state.  The real problem is the lack of effort to stop the guys who are using neurotoxins and steroids that are not tested for currently.    The claiming game is not the problem it is designed to level the playing field so all horses are supposed to be able to compete.   I am trainer and feel that 5 k claimers should not run for 20k purse it encourages people to drop sore horses to rid themselves of the problem and make a score.   Banning the drugs is like banning guns the bad guys will always find a way to get there hands on them. 

         

        • Cepatton28

          Nationwide rules and licensing would go a long way to heading the sport back in the right direction.

        • Aunt Bea

          Umm, Cepatton, I’m just curious here, if the problem isn’t Bute and Cortisone,  (nevermind the Lasix sideshow), how do you drop in a sore horse??

          • Cepatton28

            Aunt Bea there are drugs out there that actually block the nerves so there is no feeling at all.   Bute giving at the proper 24 hours do not completely block the pain like cobra venom and some of the other drugs do.   

          • Cepatton28

            Is lasix overused YES!  Does it help stop internal bleeding YES!

          • Cepatton28

            If they want to take bute and cortisone away I am fine with that as long as intense effective steps are taken to stop the guys that are obviously cheating.

          • jennifer

            Do you know why it does?

          • Cepatton28

            I do not the actual chemical processes that go on inside the body.  I know that it is a strong diuretic that removes fluid and lowers blood pressure reducing the strain on the lungs.   I have seen horses that bled mildly in workouts not bleed again with the use of lasix.

          • Frank L.

            Get a trainers license and you will find out.  Of course you will “actually” have to understand what you are talking about to pass the trainers tests?

          • Aunt Bea

            Uh, licensed 25 years here, Frank. I’m sayin it’s a problem.

          • Frank L.

            Bea –

            Licensed 25 years and “STILL”
            don’t understand, what can I say? I guess one CAN get a trainers
            license without understanding — JUST KNOWING. You do “UNDERSTAND”,
            of course, that a “sore horse” won’t pass the VET exam, or
            the physical stress of a race!! SO, what are YOU saying?

            Bute in the trace levels
            allowed are NOT going to cover a “sore horse”, no matter
            how far he drops. You obviously have never trained a “sore horse”
            —- If you had, you couldn’t be making such ridiculous statements.

        • McGov

          Totally disagree with the bute comment.  It’s a very, very, powerful drug, and plays a big role in the ‘drug problem’.

          • Cepatton28

            Bute is effective but from my own personal experiences it is not a complete block.

          • Joe

             How injured are your starters?

          • Cepatton28

            I do not run sore horses.  I am talking about using bute in therapy to treat horses that are overcoming an injury.  You do not give a horse some bute and he all of sudden becomes perfectly sound and trots like a dressage horse.

          • Frank L.

            McGov —

            In what capacity are you
            licensed on the race track? You “DO NOT” know what you are
            talking about. The only amount allowable on race day are “TRACE”
            amounts!! Those “TRACE” amounts are negligible as far as
            pain relief!!

          • Bristling

            Bute is NOT the problem

        • Bristling

          I agree with some of the things you said but if trainers are dropping in sore horses then the state vets need to do a better job and check these horses.

      • jennifer

        Wow. I am a trainer and I think your post was well put. I am a 3rd generation trainer and have found it very difficult to compete and love the horse in the same breath. If officials could be so much tougher on raceday medication the playing field would be more level to all involved. I believe that good horsemanship should get you to the winner circle, not the best chemist.

        • Cepatton28

          I agree with you that it should be about horsemanship.  I have never had a positive test and play by the rules.   

        • Frank L.

          Jennifer

          If,
          and I repeat, IF you knew what you were talking about maybe you would
          win more races. The majority, the majority, “THE MAJORITY” of
          trainers do excel in horsemanship, so the majority of the time — I
          don’t know where that leaves YOU? Chemicals that can not be tested
          for, but used, are a media headline attraction for the uninformed
          public. It just is “NOT” common practice. There is to much to
          lose on the big circuit!! Where do you train to make such a
          statement?

          • Joe

            “Chemicals that can not be tested for”… “It just is “NOT” common practice.”

            Prove it.

          • Bristling

            Frank do you live in America ? Performance enhancing drugs is running rampant in racing. And the commissions don’t have a clue how to or what to test for.

      • Frank L.

         

        How about breeding sounder
        Stallions and broodmares?

        A recent list of retirees,
        recent retirees, and retirees of the near future:

        Unbridles Song —  Fractured cannon bone;
        re-occurring feet/hoof problems ; Sire

                             
        of  many injury prone offspring.  Just
        Goggle his name!!

         Animal Kingdom — Stress facture

        Havre de Grace — lateral ligament in ankle

        Misremembered — Tendon

        Dunkirk — condylar fracture

        Archarcharch — condylar fracture

        Princess Arabella — Tendon

        Eskendereya — Soft Tissue (usually tendon or
        suspensory)

        Winslow Homer — slab fracture

        Old Fashioned — slab fracture

         

        • Jimculpepper

          Among others.

  • Cepatton28

    The vultures are circling.  I hope the people in this industry that can change it for the better would get off their collective asses and try to find a solution.

  • Tinky

    “Then there was some self-inflicted bad news.”

    Speaking of which, Twin Spires once again proved just how incompetent the (American) racing industry is when it comes to current technology. Those who watched and wagered on TS were – yet again – treated to the all too familiar, and frankly inexcusable problems associated with ‘unusual’ demand. 

    Let’s be clear about this: Churchill Downs’ interest in horse racing is overwhelmingly related to the Derby. For better or worse (I’d argue the latter), the Derby plays a disproportionately important role in the overall marketing of the sport. What that means, in this context, is that how the industry (and CDI most importantly) presents and markets the Derby also takes on added significance.

    As is typically the case with various on-line AWDs when big events take place, Twin Spires system was a badly degraded shadow of its usual self on the afternoon of the Derby. For those watching on TS TV, the times to post were invariably off, so that when the 7th at Churchill (for example) showed 15 minutes to post, there were actually only a couple of minutes remaining. It was also the case that people had trouble wagering due to “high volume”.

    This is absolutely disgraceful, especially given that it has happened many times before at TS and other ADWs. How can these companies fail so miserably to prepare for what will OBVIOUSLY be heavy demand? And never mind that an increasing majority of the potential new fans out there were weaned on electronic devices, and will be especially critical of a company (or industry) that fails to provide a top-quality experience.

    Given that this type of ineptitude hasn’t significantly improved the service on big days over the past few years, it’s hard to see how it could be making the industry any stronger.

    • nomoralcompass

      Yes Tinky, someday NYRA and CDI will get around to changing the vacuum tubes in their IBM 360 machines. Till they get their first Commodore 64′s, we will just have to be patient. Technology is advancing so quickly, and you know, no one at either organization wants to get ahead of themselves. 

      Can’t feel sorry for an industry that steadfastly insists that the rest of the world is wrong and that as a result, we have a superior game. This is one time the horse industry can’t put the “fun” back into the word Dysfunctional. 

      • Jahura2

        I too had a great experience with Twinspires on Oaks and Derby Day. The only issue I came across was quickly resolved over the phone. I appreciate the efforts of Twinspires and the staff. They saved me exhorbitant ticket and beer prices on both days which alone made me a winner!

    • CRM

      Tinky – I’m disappointed that you had such a terrible experience (though most of your experiences are terrible it seems). I played on Twin Spires Friday (from stable area at CD) and Saturday from my hotel suite where I had my Daily Racing Form, Brisnet PP’s, laptop, tablet computer and cell phone spread out, getting and sending information and deciding on wagers. 
      I had the Twin Spires TV feed on my laptop so I could see the track feed as well as WAVE 3′s live broadcast (after the early fluff stuff, Wave 3 was pretty good) and had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon. I made two wagers on Derby day as the horses were going into the gates and both were accepted before they left the gate (I would be $20 plus better off it they had NOT been able to accept those wagers, but, alas.) I was VERY UPSET when TS was showing “No wagers available on this race” as I attempted to make my Derby play (just after the “walk over”) until I realized I was attempting to bet on the completed RACE 10 rather than Race 11. I even made a late bet on Union Rags as horses were going behind gate because I thought “Rags” looked good warming up. 

      I didn’t select the winner (in fact picked the horse that ran second to him in the SA Derby), but 7 of my top 10 did finish in the top 10. (There’s not any payoff for that however.) So, I lost money on the two days. But I saw some great horse racing, some strange people and some newcomers that got “hooked” on horseracing.

      There are a lot of things Racing can (and I’ll be happy when they DO) improve. I work in the horse side of this industry and would say that I am doing something everyday to help it improve. Maybe, one day, you will have an enjoyable experience.

      • Tinky

        First, in case you hadn’t noticed, racing in the U.S. is in serious trouble. It would serve little purpose for me to focus on the relatively few positives, which is why you don’t see me waxing poetic about a fine day of racing here or there, or a rare, positive customer service experience.

        I believe, instead, that serious criticism is far more important at the moment. And with that in mind…

        I have an exceptionally fast ISP. I also spoke with others who experienced similar problems with Twin Spires. I’m glad that not everyone experienced those problems, but here are some quotes from the Pace Advantage forum on Derby day, underscoring that they were indeed widespread:”wagering pad odds and post lagging by 10 minutes””[service] has been up and down””They’re killing me. Can’t trust anything that’s happening there.””My post time is off by 10 mins. also.””I gave up trying to bet today.””It’s way, way off; still showing post time for the last race at 7 min. to post.””mine also””I was going to bet and just tried to deposit $200 and they said their check verification was down!””Hollywood 5th just finished. TwinSpires shows 7 minutes to post.””this isn’t the first time lagging has been a problem for them.””I don’t understand why this is a problem for them every year.””TVG had problems too…happens every year.”

        • Frank L.

          Tinky —

          As usual, a lot of hot
          air!! I use TS and wager from CA — I had no problem at all. I
          watched the pre Derby races at TS, since racing was not “in tune”
          with a presentation that could reach all.

          The only troubles with
          racing in the U.S., is with blowhards — does that ring a bell.
          People like YOU are not good for racing, because they know very
          little from “actual” experience, “yet”, come off as
          individuals of knowledge, though as misguided as the media in all
          forms.

          If you don’t like racing,
          and are NOT happy with how it operates — GO AWAY and don’t follow
          anymore — “YOU WILL NOT BE MISSED”!!! No sport can survive
          negative publicity — further the negative publicity aimed at horse
          racing suggests an “AGENDA”, an agenda that is foreign to U.S.
          racing, and, U.S. racing as practiced in the last 50-60 years by such
          greats as Bobby Frankel, Whittingham, Barrera, Farrell Jones,
          Threewitt — using the same race day med’s that were used on such
          horses as Cigar; Curlin; Ferdinand; Bayakoa; Paseana; Lava Man;
          Ginger Punch; Ghostzapper; etc., etc!!! Nothing has changed except
          the negative media. The know it all public knows as little as they
          “actually” did 50 years ago, yet, they “THINK” they
          understand more — therein lies the problem, the little that they do
          know they DO NOT UNDERTAND!! There is a big, big, difference between
          knowing and understanding — of all people, you, Tinky, are a
          “prime” example of of someone who “THINKS” he knows, BUT,
          understands very, very little.

          • Tinky

            Ah, since you had no problem, the countless people who did are full of “hot air”. 

            “Nothing has changed [in the last 50 years] except the negative media.”

            These are typical examples of the absurdities with which you regularly litter this site.

          • Frank L.

            Yes
            absurd to one who has NO actual experience!

            People
            cannot gain understanding from Tinky posts, BUT, understanding is
            what is needed.

            Knowledge
            without understanding is useless. And Tinky, that is what you
            spread, useless knowledge.

          • Tinky

            Thanks for the reminder – you also often lie in your posts. 

            I have over 25 years of professional experience, as I have pointed out several times, yet you choose to lie rather than address the substance of my posts. That is the most despicable form of ad hominem attacks.

          • Frank L.

            Tinky —

            When are YOU going to stop with the
            facade!! I’ve asked many, many times in what capacity were you
            “LICENSED” at the track, and you never answer. Oh, excuse me,
            you said — owner, and authorized agent, PERIOD!!! In fact, and
            that is the truth, you only have race track experience as an owner,
            THAT”S IT!!! All your other “so called” experience is fantasy
            if you were NOT licensed in that capacity at the track.!!

            You are the only one who lies and
            deceives in trying to cover your inexperience.

            Understand NOW, once and for all, on
            the race track the only “race track experience” you can claim is
            the one in which you were licensed ON THE TRACK, “PERIOD”. You
            were an owner with no “actual” race track barn experience. You
            can only get away with BULL so long — the road ends here!! I will
            ask one more time — in what capacities were YOU licensed at the
            track?

          • Tinky

            Keep up the lying, Frank; it’s all you’ve got to offer.

          • Frank L.

            You
            know Tinky, YOU, YOU, yes YOU, still haven’t answered in what
            capacities you were licensed at the track. This is the same tactic
            you have used in the past — ignore an embarrassing truth, then,
            later act as if you had answered, as you have done today!!

            Readers,
            Tinky has never answered the question, “in what capacities were
            YOU, Tinky, licensed at the “race track”. The only answer ever
            given was “owner”, Period. I have NEVER lied on this site,
            except by Tinky’s deceitfulness in accusation, as a leftist would do
            in trying to avoid an embarrassing answer, which Tinky “NEVER”
            gave. You want to pose as someone your NOT, BUT, your inexperienced
            dialogue gives you away.

            As
            I have said, already — knowledge without experience is worthless
            (that’s why we have internships for doctors).

            I’m done for the night — the floor is
            all yours for the rest of the evening!!!

          • Tinky

            One of life’s enduring mysteries is why you, Frank, haven’t yet been banned by Ray.

          • Frank L.

            The same readson you haven’t been banned!!

          • Stanley inman

            Frank, just because you’ve been successful
            In slipping those pesky ropes off your ankles and wrists
            And have pulled that gag out of your mouth,
            Doesn’t mean you’re ready for “prime time” on the
            Paulick show.

        • CRM

          I do understand racing has serious issues. However, using your thoughts in reverse, someone that has a good day is “taken to task” because they said they had a good day?

          I, too, frequent Pace Advantage (was at their first “Saratoga Getaway” and had a great time). I know many on that forum and know that they can find a racing conspiracy in an unusual amount of peanut hulls on a walkway leading to a paddock. And, I know that some of their criticism and technology shortcomings they pointed out have led to improvements. Just because someone has a good experience and talks about it doesn’t mean racing is “fixed”, nor that they can brag and say, “see, there is a satisfied customer”. 
          When I teach people to work with horses I tell them to have “positive expectations”. Expect your horse to do good when you walk to field to catch it, or into a stall to halter it. Help it learn how to have a good experience with you. Screaming and shouting at it is not as effective as getting in its stall or round pen and developing harmony. I also tell them, positive expectations will not stop you from getting kicked in the head, so follow rules of safe horse handling. 

          Stretching an analogy, but I approach racing with positive expectations — I expect to have a good time. And, even when I lose money I usually do have a good time. Positive expectations are not going to “fix” racing. But just like SCREAMING and SHOUTING at a horse only numbs it to further instruction, constant complaining from forums and blogs (or to each other) just numbs the industry to constructive criticism. HANA members have met with management at Equibase, Keeneland and others, affecting some positive changes. You might want to join that groupI understand you are frustrated with racing, Tinky. And, you will handle your frustration with racing your way. I’m going to stay in the “round pen”, keep working toward better racing and having good times, especially on BIG racing days.  

        • Bristling

          The main reason it’s in trouble is because it is too watered down.

  • Tinky

    “Then there was some self-inflicted bad news.”

    Speaking of which, Twin Spires once again proved just how incompetent the (American) racing industry is when it comes to current technology. Those who watched and wagered on TS were – yet again – treated to the all too familiar, and frankly inexcusable problems associated with ‘unusual’ demand. 

    Let’s be clear about this: Churchill Downs’ interest in horse racing is overwhelmingly related to the Derby. For better or worse (I’d argue the latter), the Derby plays a disproportionately important role in the overall marketing of the sport. What that means, in this context, is that how the industry (and CDI most importantly) presents and markets the Derby also takes on added significance.

    As is typically the case with various on-line AWDs when big events take place, Twin Spires system was a badly degraded shadow of its usual self on the afternoon of the Derby. For those watching on TS TV, the times to post were invariably off, so that when the 7th at Churchill (for example) showed 15 minutes to post, there were actually only a couple of minutes remaining. It was also the case that people had trouble wagering due to “high volume”.

    This is absolutely disgraceful, especially given that it has happened many times before at TS and other ADWs. How can these companies fail so miserably to prepare for what will OBVIOUSLY be heavy demand? And never mind that an increasing majority of the potential new fans out there were weaned on electronic devices, and will be especially critical of a company (or industry) that fails to provide a top-quality experience.

    Given that this type of ineptitude hasn’t significantly improved the service on big days over the past few years, it’s hard to see how it could be making the industry any stronger.

  • JC

    You shouldn’t give a damn about the “bad press”.  What you should be giving a damn about is whether or not the press is TRUE.  And if it is true, it might be a good time for a long look in the mirror and subsequent behavioral adjustments. 

    I am so happy for I’ll Have Another.  He’s a beautiful, talented horse.  I hope he wins the Triple Crown.  When he won the other day, I thought, “What a wonderful American Dream story”.  Until I started reading some of the comments on this blog and others.  Then I poked around the internet a little. 

    I could be wrong, or it could have been my TV set, but I thought when I’ll Have Another won that the crowd was awfully silent, rather like when all the air has been let out of its balloon.  Deflated?  Maybe.  I wondered if it was because one of the “work horses”, rather than a favorite or one of the “glamour horses” had won instead.  My second thought was, “Well, you have to be happy for the winner, and Seattle Slew wasn’t glamorous either, and look what he accomplished”.  Dynaformer wasn’t much to look at, and note what he did.  I continued to think, “Well, maybe it wasn’t Union Rags, Hansen, or Bodemeister, but everyone will get on board with this”.  I myself had thought that I’ll Have Another was a great horse, but I had doubted he would win from post 19.  I was so impressed that he proved me wrong. 

    The possibly bad antics of the connections do not take away from the talent and victory of the horse.  But it makes me wonder if this was why the crowd seemed deflated–did they all know something that I didn’t? 

    http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/horse/columns/story?columnist=plonk_jeremy&id=5464169

    Bad press?  Let me see if I can put this in terms of a simple example that you can understand.  It is so wonderful when babies are born. There is never more joy in a room than at that time.  But this is like reading a wonderful birth announcement in the newspaper, then turning the page and seeing that the attending OB is having his license revoked for possible malpractice and negligence in the death of another baby.  The happy event is now somehow tainted.  It might not kill you, and you might get stronger, but for God’s sake aren’t you tired of taint?   

    • JC

       PS–I also realize that betting losses will cause a crowd to appear or be deflated; but, my original question still stands. 

      • jm

         you could have heard a pin drop at woodbine in the club with all the owners and trainers etc. – not a word

        • JC

           Thank you jm–that speaks volumes. 

  • JC

    You shouldn’t give a damn about the “bad press”.  What you should be giving a damn about is whether or not the press is TRUE.  And if it is true, it might be a good time for a long look in the mirror and subsequent behavioral adjustments. 

    I am so happy for I’ll Have Another.  He’s a beautiful, talented horse.  I hope he wins the Triple Crown.  When he won the other day, I thought, “What a wonderful American Dream story”.  Until I started reading some of the comments on this blog and others.  Then I poked around the internet a little. 

    I could be wrong, or it could have been my TV set, but I thought when I’ll Have Another won that the crowd was awfully silent, rather like when all the air has been let out of its balloon.  Deflated?  Maybe.  I wondered if it was because one of the “work horses”, rather than a favorite or one of the “glamour horses” had won instead.  My second thought was, “Well, you have to be happy for the winner, and Seattle Slew wasn’t glamorous either, and look what he accomplished”.  Dynaformer wasn’t much to look at, and note what he did.  I continued to think, “Well, maybe it wasn’t Union Rags, Hansen, or Bodemeister, but everyone will get on board with this”.  I myself had thought that I’ll Have Another was a great horse, but I had doubted he would win from post 19.  I was so impressed that he proved me wrong. 

    The possibly bad antics of the connections do not take away from the talent and victory of the horse.  But it makes me wonder if this was why the crowd seemed deflated–did they all know something that I didn’t? 

    http://sports.espn.go.com/spor

    Bad press?  Let me see if I can put this in terms of a simple example that you can understand.  It is so wonderful when babies are born. There is never more joy in a room than at that time.  But this is like reading a wonderful birth announcement in the newspaper, then turning the page and seeing that the attending OB is having his license revoked for possible malpractice and negligence in the death of another baby.  The happy event is now somehow tainted.  It might not kill you, and you might get stronger, but for God’s sake aren’t you tired of taint?   

  • JC

     PS–I also realize that betting losses will cause a crowd to appear or be deflated; but, my original question still stands. 

  • Jimculpepper

    It’s obvious that nobody tried very hard to kill Nietzsche or else he would have kept quiet; on the other hand, unlike the racing industry He didn’t try very hard to kill himself either, and he did try to prevent the flogging of a horse in the Piazza Carlo Alberto by throwing his arms around its neck.

    • JC

       Bravo!!  :-) 

  • Jimculpepper

    It’s obvious that nobody tried very hard to kill Nietzsche or else he would have kept quiet; on the other hand, unlike the racing industry He didn’t try very hard to kill himself either, and he did try to prevent the flogging of a horse in the Piazza Carlo Alberto by throwing his arms around its neck.

  • nomoralcompass

    Yes Tinky, someday NYRA and CDI will get around to changing the vacuum tubes in their IBM 360 machines. Till they get their first Commodore 64′s, we will just have to be patient. Technology is advancing so quickly, and you know, no one at either organization wants to get ahead of themselves. 

    Can’t feel sorry for an industry that steadfastly insists that the rest of the world is wrong and that as a result, we have a superior game. This is one time the horse industry can’t put the “fun” back into the word Dysfunctional. 

  • RayPaulick

    According to Kathy Guillermo of PETA, the internal documents I referenced were shown to some reporters under the condition they not be made public. We’ll have to wait and see what emerges. Based on my prior experience with PETA and PETA’s interpretation of previous documents, I won’t consider the charges credible until I’ve had a chance to review and verify the documents myself.

    • Convene

       Based on PETA’s original, carefully unpublicized real mandate, I doubt if I’d find the charges credible whatever they are. They are animal rights, not animal welfare – and there’s a world of difference. They sometimes raise good points, true enough, but I haven’t heard any yet that hadn’t been raised more honorably by other parties who have genuine knowledge of the subject. I will eagerly wait to see if I am proven wrong this time – and will apologize if I am.

  • RayPaulick

    According to Kathy Guillermo of PETA, the internal documents I referenced were shown to some reporters under the condition they not be made public. We’ll have to wait and see what emerges. Based on my prior experience with PETA and PETA’s interpretation of previous documents, I won’t consider the charges credible until I’ve had a chance to review and verify the documents myself.

  • Burton DeWitt

    Ray, the television audience thing is not at all correct. The race portion of the broadcast received a higher rating than the average rating of the entire final round of the Masters, 9.0 vs. 8.1. The overall rating for the Derby coverage was 7.2 for the two hours from 5-7 ET. By comparison, the playoff/Green Jacket portion of the Masters coverage (the climax, comparable to the Derby race portion) hit a 9.6 rating.

    Either way, the peak numbers for the Masters were significantly higher, which corresponds (until viewership numbers are finalized at least) to a greater TV audience for the Masters.

    • Joe

      I found the television coverage great: lively, well coordinated, with great comments and full of fun features. I just wish that television coverage didn’t interfere so much with the winning horse’s need to keep moving at its own pace between the finish line and winner circle. It would be less dramatic perhaps but kinder to horse and jockey if the interview waited until horse and jockey have caught their breath and took place after the winner-circle ceremony.

  • Burton DeWitt

    Ray, the television audience thing is not at all correct. The race portion of the broadcast received a higher rating than the average rating of the entire final round of the Masters, 9.0 vs. 8.1. The overall rating for the Derby coverage was 7.2 for the two hours from 5-7 ET. By comparison, the playoff/Green Jacket portion of the Masters coverage (the climax, comparable to the Derby race portion) hit a 9.6 rating.

    Either way, the peak numbers for the Masters were significantly higher, which corresponds (until viewership numbers are finalized at least) to a greater TV audience for the Masters.

  • CRM

    Tinky – I’m disappointed that you had such a terrible experience (though most of your experiences are terrible it seems). I played on Twin Spires Friday (from stable area at CD) and Saturday from my hotel suite where I had my Daily Racing Form, Brisnet PP’s, laptop, tablet computer and cell phone spread out, getting and sending information and deciding on wagers. 
    I had the Twin Spires TV feed on my laptop so I could see the track feed as well as WAVE 3′s live broadcast (after the early fluff stuff, Wave 3 was pretty good) and had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon. I made two wagers on Derby day as the horses were going into the gates and both were accepted before they left the gate (I would be $20 plus better off it they had NOT been able to accept those wagers, but, alas.) I was VERY UPSET when TS was showing “No wagers available on this race” as I attempted to make my Derby play (just after the “walk over”) until I realized I was attempting to bet on the completed RACE 10 rather than Race 11. I even made a late bet on Union Rags as horses were going behind gate because I thought “Rags” looked good warming up. 

    I didn’t select the winner (in fact picked the horse that ran second to him in the SA Derby), but 7 of my top 10 did finish in the top 10. (There’s not any payoff for that however.) So, I lost money on the two days. But I saw some great horse racing, some strange people and some newcomers that got “hooked” on horseracing.

    There are a lot of things Racing can (and I’ll be happy when they DO) improve. I work in the horse side of this industry and would say that I am doing something everyday to help it improve. Maybe, one day, you will have an enjoyable experience.

  • Jef

    I wish my comments about the Derby could have been confined to “how come Optimizer didn’t end up carrying the Calumet silks after media reports said he would?” You know, the kind of pleasant trivia that used to occupy my concerns as a fan who is totally outside the realm of the sport’s cognoscente.

    But when I heard about “Death at Churchill Downs” as a variant on the headlines reporting the demise of the groom, my first thought was, oh no, not another horse! Enlightened, I then had to wonder, did the NY Times hire someone to knock off an illegal alien just so they could turn that rock over and finish off the sport as a post-Derby gift? Only kidding, of course.

    But last week when, in a business meeting, I mentioned looking forward to the Derby, someone who knows zero about racing said, did you know that the NY Times said 100 horses died at Aqueduct this winter? Truth be told, I hadn’t digested the stats in advance of that meeting, but even I knew that had to be wrong. Turns out, the 100 was the percentage increase in deaths. Did it matter? Not really. Because to maybe the 10 people in that meeting, all came away with a horrendous impression of the sport.

    No wonder I felt depressed on the morning of the Derby. All I wanted was for Union Rags to get a fair break and have a chance to show his stuff. But I knew that somehow  bumping and crowding would deny this fairy tale that I so much wanted to come true. I have always loved racing for its narrative–the stories about the little guy who succeeds against all odds, the magnificence of the legendary breeding farms, the competitive fire of the great equine athlete, the raising of the rafters when a champion prevails at the wire (Rachel Alexandra at the Woodward was an unforgettable experience)–all the way back to my first love, Kelso. I’ve given generously to the TRF and am completely baffled at what has happened there.

    The only positive feeling I have today is gratitude that there were no breakdowns in the Derby.

    • JC

      I too am beyond grateful that there were no breakdowns.  I watch a lot of racing and three of my kids were in the room for the Derby.  It’s also something else watching it on today’s big screens with HD–like you’re right there on the track–a thundering herd, nostrils flaring, dirt flying everywhere, great photography, and hearing most everything.  And a 20-horse field puts your heart in your throat every time.  Thank God they did well.  

  • Jef

    I wish my comments about the Derby could have been confined to “how come Optimizer didn’t end up carrying the Calumet silks after media reports said he would?” You know, the kind of pleasant trivia that used to occupy my concerns as a fan who is totally outside the realm of the sport’s cognoscente.

    But when I heard about “Death at Churchill Downs” as a variant on the headlines reporting the demise of the groom, my first thought was, oh no, not another horse! Enlightened, I then had to wonder, did the NY Times hire someone to knock off an illegal alien just so they could turn that rock over and finish off the sport as a post-Derby gift? Only kidding, of course.

    But last week when, in a business meeting, I mentioned looking forward to the Derby, someone who knows zero about racing said, did you know that the NY Times said 100 horses died at Aqueduct this winter? Truth be told, I hadn’t digested the stats in advance of that meeting, but even I knew that had to be wrong. Turns out, the 100 was the percentage increase in deaths. Did it matter? Not really. Because to maybe the 10 people in that meeting, all came away with a horrendous impression of the sport.

    No wonder I felt depressed on the morning of the Derby. All I wanted was for Union Rags to get a fair break and have a chance to show his stuff. But I knew that somehow  bumping and crowding would deny this fairy tale that I so much wanted to come true. I have always loved racing for its narrative–the stories about the little guy who succeeds against all odds, the magnificence of the legendary breeding farms, the competitive fire of the great equine athlete, the raising of the rafters when a champion prevails at the wire (Rachel Alexandra at the Woodward was an unforgettable experience)–all the way back to my first love, Kelso. I’ve given generously to the TRF and am completely baffled at what has happened there.

    The only positive feeling I have today is gratitude that there were no breakdowns in the Derby.

  • Jahura2

    I too had a great experience with Twinspires on Oaks and Derby Day. The only issue I came across was quickly resolved over the phone. I appreciate the efforts of Twinspires and the staff. They saved me exhorbitant ticket and beer prices on both days which alone made me a winner!

  • Joe

    The solution is obvious. No need to try finding it! Change the culture. First and foremost, put the welfare and safety of horses (and their riders) first instead of money and power. Ban all drugs that are used to manipulate equine appearance and performance. Only medicate horses to offer genuine therapy well off-competition and publicly disclose equine medical records. Protect the rights of ethical horsemen to fair competition by protecting all horses against abuse and cheating including with drugs. Protect caring trainers (and their horses) by officially mandating rest and retirement of horses as needed. Perform off-competition soundness monitoring. Reform and shrink the claiming game: ban all tags under 5K, then 7,5K, 10K and keep raising the bar if needed, among other injury-prevention measures which beg to be implemented to save horses and “the game”.

  • ManuelB

    Even this blog, that I think covers racing thoroughly is not immune to blaming the messenger. As one of the others has said: is what is being said true? If it is, then the answer has to be to make the changes so that these things can’t be said about horse racing in North America. Everything else is just hiding one’s head in the sand.

    • Joe

       Sad but true, Manuel.

  • ManuelB

    Even this blog, that I think covers racing thoroughly is not immune to blaming the messenger. As one of the others has said: is what is being said true? If it is, then the answer has to be to make the changes so that these things can’t be said about horse racing in North America. Everything else is just hiding one’s head in the sand.

  • Joe

    I found the television coverage great: lively, well coordinated, with great comments and full of fun features. I just wish that television coverage didn’t interfere so much with the winning horse’s need to keep moving at its own pace between the finish line and winner circle. It would be less dramatic perhaps but kinder to horse and jockey if the interview waited until horse and jockey have caught their breath and took place after the winner-circle ceremony.

  • Cepatton28

    The drug problem has very little to do with lasix and bute.   Most of in the business follow the guidelines to the letter even though the rules change state by state.  The real problem is the lack of effort to stop the guys who are using neurotoxins and steroids that are not tested for currently.    The claiming game is not the problem it is designed to level the playing field so all horses are supposed to be able to compete.   I am trainer and feel that 5 k claimers should not run for 20k purse it encourages people to drop sore horses to rid themselves of the problem and make a score.   Banning the drugs is like banning guns the bad guys will always find a way to get there hands on them. 

     

  • Cepatton28

    Nationwide rules and licensing would go a long way to heading the sport back in the right direction.

  • Ida Lee

    Nietzsche said that?  I thought it was Kelly Clarkson….Nevermind, the biggest disaster, of course, was Julien on Union Rags. 

  • Ida Lee

    Nietzsche said that?  I thought it was Kelly Clarkson….Nevermind, the biggest disaster, of course, was Julien on Union Rags. 

  • Aunt Bea

    Umm, Cepatton, I’m just curious here, if the problem isn’t Bute and Cortisone,  (nevermind the Lasix sideshow), how do you drop in a sore horse??

  • Cepatton28

    Aunt Bea there are drugs out there that actually block the nerves so there is no feeling at all.   Bute giving at the proper 24 hours do not completely block the pain like cobra venom and some of the other drugs do.   

  • Cepatton28

    Is lasix overused YES!  Does it help stop internal bleeding YES!

  • Cepatton28

    If they want to take bute and cortisone away I am fine with that as long as intense effective steps are taken to stop the guys that are obviously cheating.

  • McGov

    Totally disagree with the bute comment.  It’s a very, very, powerful drug, and plays a big role in the ‘drug problem’.

  • jennifer

    Wow. I am a trainer and I think your post was well put. I am a 3rd generation trainer and have found it very difficult to compete and love the horse in the same breath. If officials could be so much tougher on raceday medication the playing field would be more level to all involved. I believe that good horsemanship should get you to the winner circle, not the best chemist.

  • Tinky

    First, in case you hadn’t noticed, racing in the U.S. is in serious trouble. It would serve little purpose for me to focus on the relatively few positives, which is why you don’t see me waxing poetic about a fine day of racing here or there, or a rare, positive customer service experience.

    I believe, instead, that serious criticism is far more important at the moment. And with that in mind…

    I have an exceptionally fast ISP. I also spoke with others who experienced similar problems with Twin Spires. I’m glad that not everyone experienced those problems, but here are some quotes from the Pace Advantage forum on Derby day, underscoring that they were indeed widespread:”wagering pad odds and post lagging by 10 minutes””[service] has been up and down””They’re killing me. Can’t trust anything that’s happening there.””My post time is off by 10 mins. also.””I gave up trying to bet today.””It’s way, way off; still showing post time for the last race at 7 min. to post.””mine also””I was going to bet and just tried to deposit $200 and they said their check verification was down!””Hollywood 5th just finished. TwinSpires shows 7 minutes to post.””this isn’t the first time lagging has been a problem for them.””I don’t understand why this is a problem for them every year.””TVG had problems too…happens every year.”

  • jennifer

    Do you know why it does?

  • Cepatton28

    Bute is effective but from my own personal experiences it is not a complete block.

  • Cepatton28

    I do not the actual chemical processes that go on inside the body.  I know that it is a strong diuretic that removes fluid and lowers blood pressure reducing the strain on the lungs.   I have seen horses that bled mildly in workouts not bleed again with the use of lasix.

  • Cepatton28

    I agree with you that it should be about horsemanship.  I have never had a positive test and play by the rules.   

  • MA

    Just wait ’til someone in the general news media gets a hold of Doug O’Neill’s record.

    • JC

       I for one am all attention. 

    • Anita Xanax

      Darlin, they did today a lil…another tCO2 elevation in CA…

      • Joe

         If a drug-overage or illegal substance was found in a KY Derby (or BC) winner which would win: integrity or PR?

        • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

          Ray Paulick would come out and defend racing and say its not as bad as it seems and not to worry about it. Just close your eyes and think happy thoughts and it will all go away!!

          • Bmezlan

            The Racing Post in the UK is covering the Drug O’Neill milkshake story but not the DRF or head in the sand Ray Paulick.  Paulick is also mocking the Josckey Club’s effort at medication reform on Twitter.  Racing has a problem and denial is th first stage.

          • RayPaulick

             Wrong on both accounts. We featured the NY Times story on O’Neill prominently today, I have written extensively about O’Neill’s past (Google Doug O’Neill and Ray Paulick).  did not mock The Jockey Club’s effort. I suggested people visit http://www.cleanracing.org if they believed reform was needed and wanted to sign a petition.

            But I am guilty of having some fun. Under the supporter tab, I suggested clicking on all four videos at once and listening to anti-medication chorus..

          • GC

            Ray, since bute is a blood thinner, it may be the reason so many horses bleed and could be the only reason they need lasix. Too many trainers give bute just in case.

    • JC

       Well, it stands to reason that the New York Times would be happy to have another angle on a silver platter–or, in a silver cup.  :-/ 

  • MA

    Just wait ’til someone in the general news media gets a hold of Doug O’Neill’s record.

  • Frank L.

    Tinky —

    As usual, a lot of hot
    air!! I use TS and wager from CA — I had no problem at all. I
    watched the pre Derby races at TS, since racing was not “in tune”
    with a presentation that could reach all.

    The only troubles with
    racing in the U.S., is with blowhards — does that ring a bell.
    People like YOU are not good for racing, because they know very
    little from “actual” experience, “yet”, come off as
    individuals of knowledge, though as misguided as the media in all
    forms.

    If you don’t like racing,
    and are NOT happy with how it operates — GO AWAY and don’t follow
    anymore — “YOU WILL NOT BE MISSED”!!! No sport can survive
    negative publicity — further the negative publicity aimed at horse
    racing suggests an “AGENDA”, an agenda that is foreign to U.S.
    racing, and, U.S. racing as practiced in the last 50-60 years by such
    greats as Bobby Frankel, Whittingham, Barrera, Farrell Jones,
    Threewitt — using the same race day med’s that were used on such
    horses as Cigar; Curlin; Ferdinand; Bayakoa; Paseana; Lava Man;
    Ginger Punch; Ghostzapper; etc., etc!!! Nothing has changed except
    the negative media. The know it all public knows as little as they
    “actually” did 50 years ago, yet, they “THINK” they
    understand more — therein lies the problem, the little that they do
    know they DO NOT UNDERTAND!! There is a big, big, difference between
    knowing and understanding — of all people, you, Tinky, are a
    “prime” example of of someone who “THINKS” he knows, BUT,
    understands very, very little.

  • Tinky

    Ah, since you had no problem, the countless people who did are full of “hot air”. 

    “Nothing has changed [in the last 50 years] except the negative media.”

    These are typical examples of the absurdities with which you regularly litter this site.

  • Frank L.

     

    How about breeding sounder
    Stallions and broodmares?

    A recent list of retirees,
    recent retirees, and retirees of the near future:

    Unbridles Song —  Fractured cannon bone;
    re-occurring feet/hoof problems ; Sire

                         
    of  many injury prone offspring.  Just
    Goggle his name!!

     Animal Kingdom — Stress facture

    Havre de Grace — lateral ligament in ankle

    Misremembered — Tendon

    Dunkirk — condylar fracture

    Archarcharch — condylar fracture

    Princess Arabella — Tendon

    Eskendereya — Soft Tissue (usually tendon or
    suspensory)

    Winslow Homer — slab fracture

    Old Fashioned — slab fracture

     

  • Frank L.

    Jennifer

    If,
    and I repeat, IF you knew what you were talking about maybe you would
    win more races. The majority, the majority, “THE MAJORITY” of
    trainers do excel in horsemanship, so the majority of the time — I
    don’t know where that leaves YOU? Chemicals that can not be tested
    for, but used, are a media headline attraction for the uninformed
    public. It just is “NOT” common practice. There is to much to
    lose on the big circuit!! Where do you train to make such a
    statement?

  • Frank L.

    Get a trainers license and you will find out.  Of course you will “actually” have to understand what you are talking about to pass the trainers tests?

  • Frank L.

    McGov —

    In what capacity are you
    licensed on the race track? You “DO NOT” know what you are
    talking about. The only amount allowable on race day are “TRACE”
    amounts!! Those “TRACE” amounts are negligible as far as
    pain relief!!

  • Frank L.

    Yes
    absurd to one who has NO actual experience!

    People
    cannot gain understanding from Tinky posts, BUT, understanding is
    what is needed.

    Knowledge
    without understanding is useless. And Tinky, that is what you
    spread, useless knowledge.

  • Jordanlay

    It’s not piling on if the ball is fumbled and loose.

  • Jordanlay

    It’s not piling on if the ball is fumbled and loose.

  • jm

     you could have heard a pin drop at woodbine in the club with all the owners and trainers etc. – not a word

  • Joe

     How injured are your starters?

  • Tinky

    Thanks for the reminder – you also often lie in your posts. 

    I have over 25 years of professional experience, as I have pointed out several times, yet you choose to lie rather than address the substance of my posts. That is the most despicable form of ad hominem attacks.

  • Joe

    “Chemicals that can not be tested for”… “It just is “NOT” common practice.”

    Prove it.

  • Aunt Bea

    Uh, licensed 25 years here, Frank. I’m sayin it’s a problem.

  • JC

     Bravo!!  :-) 

  • JC

     Thank you jm–that speaks volumes. 

  • Frank L.

    Tinky —

    When are YOU going to stop with the
    facade!! I’ve asked many, many times in what capacity were you
    “LICENSED” at the track, and you never answer. Oh, excuse me,
    you said — owner, and authorized agent, PERIOD!!! In fact, and
    that is the truth, you only have race track experience as an owner,
    THAT”S IT!!! All your other “so called” experience is fantasy
    if you were NOT licensed in that capacity at the track.!!

    You are the only one who lies and
    deceives in trying to cover your inexperience.

    Understand NOW, once and for all, on
    the race track the only “race track experience” you can claim is
    the one in which you were licensed ON THE TRACK, “PERIOD”. You
    were an owner with no “actual” race track barn experience. You
    can only get away with BULL so long — the road ends here!! I will
    ask one more time — in what capacities were YOU licensed at the
    track?

  • Tinky

    Keep up the lying, Frank; it’s all you’ve got to offer.

  • Joe

     Sad but true, Manuel.

  • The Seer

    Was that Nietzsche or Kanye? 

  • The Seer

    Was that Nietzsche or Kanye? 

  • Frank L.

    Bea –

    Licensed 25 years and “STILL”
    don’t understand, what can I say? I guess one CAN get a trainers
    license without understanding — JUST KNOWING. You do “UNDERSTAND”,
    of course, that a “sore horse” won’t pass the VET exam, or
    the physical stress of a race!! SO, what are YOU saying?

    Bute in the trace levels
    allowed are NOT going to cover a “sore horse”, no matter
    how far he drops. You obviously have never trained a “sore horse”
    —- If you had, you couldn’t be making such ridiculous statements.

  • Frank L.

    You
    know Tinky, YOU, YOU, yes YOU, still haven’t answered in what
    capacities you were licensed at the track. This is the same tactic
    you have used in the past — ignore an embarrassing truth, then,
    later act as if you had answered, as you have done today!!

    Readers,
    Tinky has never answered the question, “in what capacities were
    YOU, Tinky, licensed at the “race track”. The only answer ever
    given was “owner”, Period. I have NEVER lied on this site,
    except by Tinky’s deceitfulness in accusation, as a leftist would do
    in trying to avoid an embarrassing answer, which Tinky “NEVER”
    gave. You want to pose as someone your NOT, BUT, your inexperienced
    dialogue gives you away.

    As
    I have said, already — knowledge without experience is worthless
    (that’s why we have internships for doctors).

    I’m done for the night — the floor is
    all yours for the rest of the evening!!!

  • Double Jay

    I think this is a good argument for a central organization to oversee the sport. There is no one to take responsibility to answer the outrageous things that are said in the NY Times. They couldn’t trash the NFL or any other sport and get away with it without a response. No one to point out all the inaccurate, inflammatory reporting. There is no one to speak about the real problems and what is being done about them. This idea or opinion came from Lenny Schulman at the Bloodhorse. I agree!

  • Double Jay

    I think this is a good argument for a central organization to oversee the sport. There is no one to take responsibility to answer the outrageous things that are said in the NY Times. They couldn’t trash the NFL or any other sport and get away with it without a response. No one to point out all the inaccurate, inflammatory reporting. There is no one to speak about the real problems and what is being done about them. This idea or opinion came from Lenny Schulman at the Bloodhorse. I agree!

  • JC

     I for one am all attention. 

  • JC

    I too am beyond grateful that there were no breakdowns.  I watch a lot of racing and three of my kids were in the room for the Derby.  It’s also something else watching it on today’s big screens with HD–like you’re right there on the track–a thundering herd, nostrils flaring, dirt flying everywhere, great photography, and hearing most everything.  And a 20-horse field puts your heart in your throat every time.  Thank God they did well.  

  • Cepatton28

    I do not run sore horses.  I am talking about using bute in therapy to treat horses that are overcoming an injury.  You do not give a horse some bute and he all of sudden becomes perfectly sound and trots like a dressage horse.

  • Jimculpepper

    Among others.

  • David

    Of course it’s chicken little on steroids but, this business has itself to blame for its refusal to adapt to just about anything.  The perception of drug-ridden backsides isn’t accurate but the industry won’t throw even the smallest bone to stem the tide of growing public perception that tracks are legalized crack houses.  Try and name the past 10 Derby winners and one might conclude the sentiment that a bunch of brown (occasionally gray), no name horses haven’t won the race as much as survived it isn’t so unfair.  Racing desperately needs reform requiring leadership and until it happens a target will be too inviting for those inclined to take shots.

    • Glenn Thompson

      David, I hate to say it but the “drug ridden backside” is accurate and has been for a long, long time.

      • commonsenseprevails

        Milkshake? A mixture of baking soda,sugar,and eletrolytes to combat fatigue. That sounds horrible! Where can I get 1 of those? 

        • Neville

          http://www.jockeysite.com/stories/milkshake.htm  here is some background on what a “milkshake” is and what it is used for. I would recommend that you read the whole thing, but the following two paragraphs were, in my opinion, the most important:
           
          “The concept with milkshaking is that if you can increase the alkalinity of the
          blood (pH of the blood), this would buffer the build-up of lactate. In human
          terms (albeit simplistically), this equate to the tightening of muscles athletes
          experience towards the end of strenuous exercise. By increasing the pH of the
          blood, you can remove or delay that effect, therefore not run faster, but rather
          maintain your maximum speed for longer.”
           
          and
           
          “Screening for the illict use of bicarbonate resulted for two reasons: 1. There
          was a perception (at the very least) that people were receiving an unfair
          advantage through this practice and 2. The practice may also be undertaken to
          try and mask the administration of other prohibited substances.”
           
          Or this well-researched and well-written piece from the The Thoroughbred Times  in 2004:  http://www.thoroughbredtimes.com/horse-health/2004/january/10/veterinary-topics-milkshakes-leave-a-bad-taste.aspx
           
          “In most cases, over-trained, under-trained, or poorly trained individuals benefit from the administration of alkalising agents, as opposed to a horse that is nutritionally and metabolically fit and of sound structure.”
           
          FINALLY … What is the ingestion of Bicarbonate actually doing to the horse? 
          Bicarbonate loading can produce negative effects. Human athletes who follow this  regimen report side effects such as intestinal discomfort, stomach distress, nausea, cramping, diarrhea, and water retention. Although bicarbonate loading in human competition is not banned, it does have serious health-related consequences. Bicarbonate loading increases blood alkalinity and influences high blood pressure.
           
          The following was posted on the forum discussion on this very subject at the website themanestreet.com:
           
          “Tubing that amount of baking soda into the digestive tract is extremely damaging
          to the horse, the sludge will impact and burn the surface of the gut. Impaction
          colic after the race is fairly common when this practice is used, as well as gut
          scarring. Therefore, it is only used by trainers and owners with little long
          term horse sense or care about the horse as an individual, as well as those who
          are morally bankrupt enough to think that cheating or attempting to cheat is OK.

           
          So the bottom line on Milkshaking is:
          1. It is cheating.
          2. It is used by trainers who cannot adequately train the horse for the distance of the race.
          3. It masks other banned substances.
          4. It is an unhealthy thing to pump into a horse’s stomach.

          • commonsenseprevails

            Again referencing an Austrailian study where you can train on Lasix but when a horse really needs it to prevent internal damage, They can’t have it. Sorry no credibility with me. We are in America,we have the best racing in the world! The days of milkshaking every horse and running on synthetic morphine are over. The only thing thoroughbreds get on race day now is lasix to prevent pulmonary hemorrhaging,given the choice I think any horse would opt for the shot instead of waterboarding.

          • Neville

            So …. bicarbonate only buffers lactid acid within the confines of Australia?

        • Jaclyn21

          Call Doug O’Neill or Jeff Mullins! Or just go to the backstretch at any track in California!

      • Dc

        I really wish you wouldn’t lumping everyone together, NOT everyone is pushing the envelope so to speak, you sound like a bitter vindictive old lady.I am not saying there are not problems there are, but there are more good people on the backside than bad, and you are not being fair to those of us that love horses and racing and play by the book. Maybe you should talk to a few of us and relate those stories.

         

  • David

    Of course it’s chicken little on steroids but, this business has itself to blame for its refusal to adapt to just about anything.  The perception of drug-ridden backsides isn’t accurate but the industry won’t throw even the smallest bone to stem the tide of growing public perception that tracks are legalized crack houses.  Try and name the past 10 Derby winners and one might conclude the sentiment that a bunch of brown (occasionally gray), no name horses haven’t won the race as much as survived it isn’t so unfair.  Racing desperately needs reform requiring leadership and until it happens a target will be too inviting for those inclined to take shots.

  • Tinky

    One of life’s enduring mysteries is why you, Frank, haven’t yet been banned by Ray.

  • Bmezlan

    Couldn’t agree more with “MA.”  I tweeted the night before the derby, that a lot of good stories could come out of the race but Doug O’Neill was not one of them. But the “my little pony” racing journalists/bloggers none of them were going to ask any tough questions on Derby weekend.  The problem with these “journalists” is the want to socialize with the people they cover.  That is why Claire Novak tweets about taking five pairs of shoes to the Derby but won’t ask Doug O’Neill a tough question.  If racing won’t police itself, then the government and the New York Times will be happy to step in.

    • JC

       What, are they afraid to ask the questions during Triple Crown season?  People may need to discern the difference between decency and cowardice, not to mention the utter shallowness of frontrunning.  I’m no fan of sickening tabloid or yellow journalism, but the TRUTH would be nice. The biggest prayers for I’ll Have Another and all the other horses in that barn.  

    • Glenn Thompson

      Great Point!! Paulick is the same way and there are two options with him. He is either very, very stupid or he is buddies with the cheaters. Either way it looks very bad when someone with his reputation stands up for all that is bad in racing.

      • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

        with all due respect to Ray as he was run off @ the bloodhorse for speaking his mind wasn’t he???…he must be $tuck between the old rock & a hard $pot???…gotta sell AD$ r the pony show stops HEAR…there is a CRACK n the door of the old gaurd & ITS ABOUT TO BEE KICKED N BABY!!!…LONG LIVE THE KING/THE KING IS REALLY “THE HORSE”!!!…PERIOD…

      • Upstart

        What is your problem…seriously?  Get your own blog and then lets see how many show up.

    • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

      TELL IT LIKE IT IS!!!…TY…

    • commonsenseprevails

      The government does such a fantastic job with everything it touches! that’s just what racing needs, certain death!

  • Bmezlan

    Couldn’t agree more with “MA.”  I tweeted the night before the derby, that a lot of good stories could come out of the race but Doug O’Neill was not one of them. But the “my little pony” racing journalists/bloggers none of them were going to ask any tough questions on Derby weekend.  The problem with these “journalists” is the want to socialize with the people they cover.  That is why Claire Novak tweets about taking five pairs of shoes to the Derby but won’t ask Doug O’Neill a tough question.  If racing won’t police itself, then the government and the New York Times will be happy to step in.

  • Anita Xanax

    Darlin, they did today a lil…another tCO2 elevation in CA…

  • Frank L.

    The same readson you haven’t been banned!!

  • JC

     What, are they afraid to ask the questions during Triple Crown season?  People may need to discern the difference between decency and cowardice, not to mention the utter shallowness of frontrunning.  I’m no fan of sickening tabloid or yellow journalism, but the TRUTH would be nice. The biggest prayers for I’ll Have Another and all the other horses in that barn.  

  • JC

     Well, it stands to reason that the New York Times would be happy to have another angle on a silver platter–or, in a silver cup.  :-/ 

  • Rob Whiteley

    Not so sure it’s accurate to say that “despite all that bad news…the game has survived, and maybe even thrived.” In all the anticipation and excitement, it’s easy to confuse the Derby with the game (industry).

    • RayPaulick

       You’re right, Rob. It’s the big events and the boutique meetings that have done well. There is too much bad racing throughout the year, and I’m afraid with the exception of our few popular events the sport is only as good as its weakest link.

      • Rob Whiteley

        Perfectly phrased. I wish I could write like you … and you do it day in and day out !

  • Rob Whiteley

    Not so sure it’s accurate to say that “despite all that bad news…the game has survived, and maybe even thrived.” In all the anticipation and excitement, it’s easy to confuse the Derby with the game (industry).

  • johnnyknj

    Ray, I think you have to include the NYRA fiasco in the “self-inflicted” category. Hard to blame on the NYT or anyone else.

  • sittin’ chilly

    Ray, I think you have to include the NYRA fiasco in the “self-inflicted” category. Hard to blame on the NYT or anyone else.

  • Joe

    Lasix and bute are used as a diversion. Discussing hardcore legal and illegal drugs and practices is being avoided. “The game” will stall exposing its ugliest side for as long as it possibly can because doing so would cause chaos and force the passing of expensive and disruptive equine welfare and safety reforms.

    “I am trainer and feel that 5 k claimers should not run for 20k purse it
    encourages people to drop sore horses to rid themselves of the problem
    and make a score.”

    I agree with you. Dangling so much money in front of owners of bottom-level claimers is evil; it is dangerous for horses and extremely wasteful while “the game” begs for quality, horses beg for safety and ethical horsemen beg for integrity. Slots monies should be distributed in ways that would promote and reward sound horsemanship and ethical conduct.

    “Banning the drugs is like banning guns the bad guys will always find a way to get there hands on them.”

    Correct. That why all race horses need 24/7 protection: security, very limited access to horses and no drugs except from/in front of regulatory vets and only for genuine therapeutic purposes, surveillance and tracking, among other protective measures. That would be inconvenient, expensive and disruptive and as long as “the game” can get away with failing to protect the horses, it will.

    • JC

       Sickening. 

  • Joe

    Lasix and bute are used as a diversion. Discussing hardcore legal and illegal drugs and practices is being avoided. “The game” will stall exposing its ugliest side for as long as it possibly can because doing so would cause chaos and force the passing of expensive and disruptive equine welfare and safety reforms.

    “I am trainer and feel that 5 k claimers should not run for 20k purse it
    encourages people to drop sore horses to rid themselves of the problem
    and make a score.”

    I agree with you. Dangling so much money in front of owners of bottom-level claimers is evil; it is dangerous for horses and extremely wasteful while “the game” begs for quality, horses beg for safety and ethical horsemen beg for integrity. Slots monies should be distributed in ways that would promote and reward sound horsemanship and ethical conduct.

    “Banning the drugs is like banning guns the bad guys will always find a way to get there hands on them.”

    Correct. That why all race horses need 24/7 protection: security, very limited access to horses and no drugs except from/in front of regulatory vets and only for genuine therapeutic purposes, surveillance and tracking, among other protective measures. That would be inconvenient, expensive and disruptive and as long as “the game” can get away with failing to protect the horses, it will.

  • Convene

    North of the border … I was amused (cynically, as I know the way things are up here) to notice that my city’s local newspaper didn’t even MENTION the Derby on Monday. This even tho it spends endless lines of type chest-thumping every success, no matter how minor, a Canadian accomplishes in any other sport. Excuse me but isn’t J. Paul Reddam Canadian? Windsor is a Canadian city – or so I though! Now if it had been his child’s team winning a peewee hockey game at the local park, it would have rated several paragraphs. This is how the press helps kill racing; newspapers think that because they don’t like racing, none of the rest of us do either. Personally, I couldn’t care less if another hockey game was never played – but I do care about racing. So, on behalf of those of us who live north of the border, congratulations to J. Paul Reddam on his success with I’ll Have Another. And piddle on our local papers for ignoring them!

  • Convene

    North of the border … I was amused (cynically, as I know the way things are up here) to notice that my city’s local newspaper didn’t even MENTION the Derby on Monday. This even tho it spends endless lines of type chest-thumping every success, no matter how minor, a Canadian accomplishes in any other sport. Excuse me but isn’t J. Paul Reddam Canadian? Windsor is a Canadian city – or so I though! Now if it had been his child’s team winning a peewee hockey game at the local park, it would have rated several paragraphs. This is how the press helps kill racing; newspapers think that because they don’t like racing, none of the rest of us do either. Personally, I couldn’t care less if another hockey game was never played – but I do care about racing. So, on behalf of those of us who live north of the border, congratulations to J. Paul Reddam on his success with I’ll Have Another. And piddle on our local papers for ignoring them!

  • Stanley inman

    Frank, just because you’ve been successful
    In slipping those pesky ropes off your ankles and wrists
    And have pulled that gag out of your mouth,
    Doesn’t mean you’re ready for “prime time” on the
    Paulick show.

  • CRM

    I do understand racing has serious issues. However, using your thoughts in reverse, someone that has a good day is “taken to task” because they said they had a good day?

    I, too, frequent Pace Advantage (was at their first “Saratoga Getaway” and had a great time). I know many on that forum and know that they can find a racing conspiracy in an unusual amount of peanut hulls on a walkway leading to a paddock. And, I know that some of their criticism and technology shortcomings they pointed out have led to improvements. Just because someone has a good experience and talks about it doesn’t mean racing is “fixed”, nor that they can brag and say, “see, there is a satisfied customer”. 
    When I teach people to work with horses I tell them to have “positive expectations”. Expect your horse to do good when you walk to field to catch it, or into a stall to halter it. Help it learn how to have a good experience with you. Screaming and shouting at it is not as effective as getting in its stall or round pen and developing harmony. I also tell them, positive expectations will not stop you from getting kicked in the head, so follow rules of safe horse handling. 

    Stretching an analogy, but I approach racing with positive expectations — I expect to have a good time. And, even when I lose money I usually do have a good time. Positive expectations are not going to “fix” racing. But just like SCREAMING and SHOUTING at a horse only numbs it to further instruction, constant complaining from forums and blogs (or to each other) just numbs the industry to constructive criticism. HANA members have met with management at Equibase, Keeneland and others, affecting some positive changes. You might want to join that groupI understand you are frustrated with racing, Tinky. And, you will handle your frustration with racing your way. I’m going to stay in the “round pen”, keep working toward better racing and having good times, especially on BIG racing days.  

  • JC

     Sickening. 

  • Convene

     Based on PETA’s original, carefully unpublicized real mandate, I doubt if I’d find the charges credible whatever they are. They are animal rights, not animal welfare – and there’s a world of difference. They sometimes raise good points, true enough, but I haven’t heard any yet that hadn’t been raised more honorably by other parties who have genuine knowledge of the subject. I will eagerly wait to see if I am proven wrong this time – and will apologize if I am.

  • dh

    Wait until O’neill’s next “positive” is announced, it won’t be good press.

  • dh

    Wait until O’neill’s next “positive” is announced, it won’t be good press.

  • Ida Lee

    Anyone need more bad press during Derby week festivities???  Advice, who was in the 2009 Kentucky Derby (yeah that’s right…2009!!!), is up for adoption after having been rescued from the $3,000 purse circuit.  I swear it’s enough to make me hate this sport and everyone associated with it. 

    • JC

       Might be a pipe dream, but I pray for an eventual world where owners do not treat their horses or any other animals like disposable trash. 

  • Ida Lee

    Anyone need more bad press during Derby week festivities???  Advice, who was in the 2009 Kentucky Derby (yeah that’s right…2009!!!), is up for adoption after having been rescued from the $3,000 purse circuit.  I swear it’s enough to make me hate this sport and everyone associated with it. 

  • Ida Lee

    Here’s another bad press moment during this year’s Derby festivities…Advice, one of the runners in the 2009 Derby, was rescued from the $3,000 purse circuit and is up for adoption.  I’m sure it’s one of the reasons why it’s so difficult to attract more people to this sport. If you love animals, this idea of using them and then chewing and spitting them out is heartbreaking. Advice at least was resued and there are people in this sport who are keeping track of Derby horses which is why he was rescued in the first place and he is being taken care of until he gets adopted. BUT why is a horse who raced in the most famous and iconic race in the world have to be rescued in the first place. And what about those that are not Derby horses. I can’t even thing about it.

  • Ida Lee

    Here’s another bad press moment during this year’s Derby festivities…Advice, one of the runners in the 2009 Derby, was rescued from the $3,000 purse circuit and is up for adoption.  I’m sure it’s one of the reasons why it’s so difficult to attract more people to this sport. If you love animals, this idea of using them and then chewing and spitting them out is heartbreaking. Advice at least was resued and there are people in this sport who are keeping track of Derby horses which is why he was rescued in the first place and he is being taken care of until he gets adopted. BUT why is a horse who raced in the most famous and iconic race in the world have to be rescued in the first place. And what about those that are not Derby horses. I can’t even thing about it.

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    99.9% of amercians will not remember a bit of it the next day…so DON’T WORRY BE HAPPY!!!…BACK…BACK…BACK!!!…

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    99.9% of amercians will not remember a bit of it the next day…so DON’T WORRY BE HAPPY!!!…BACK…BACK…BACK!!!…

  • Joe

     If a drug-overage or illegal substance was found in a KY Derby (or BC) winner which would win: integrity or PR?

  • JC

     Might be a pipe dream, but I pray for an eventual world where owners do not treat their horses or any other animals like disposable trash. 

  • Glenn Thompson

    Great Point!! Paulick is the same way and there are two options with him. He is either very, very stupid or he is buddies with the cheaters. Either way it looks very bad when someone with his reputation stands up for all that is bad in racing.

  • Glenn Thompson

    David, I hate to say it but the “drug ridden backside” is accurate and has been for a long, long time.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray Paulick would come out and defend racing and say its not as bad as it seems and not to worry about it. Just close your eyes and think happy thoughts and it will all go away!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    I think we all know it’s true, We just have to make sure we do somthing about it!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    I think we all know it’s true, We just have to make sure we do somthing about it!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray, I am sorry but I don’t think you are capable of reviewing or verifying anything!! You were given the chance to review and verify the drug and cheating issue and failed miserably. I find it shocking that you can even come on this forum and claim to investigate anything. And why did you call McPeek failed, bitter and confused? You shouldn’t confuse yourself with other people!! Poor Kenny!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray, I am sorry but I don’t think you are capable of reviewing or verifying anything!! You were given the chance to review and verify the drug and cheating issue and failed miserably. I find it shocking that you can even come on this forum and claim to investigate anything. And why did you call McPeek failed, bitter and confused? You shouldn’t confuse yourself with other people!! Poor Kenny!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray Paulick, I am sorry to say but I think you are not capable of reviewing or verifying anything. You had your chance to verify and review the cheating and failed miserably! And why did you call Kenny McPeek failed, bitter and confused? You should try not to confuse yourself with other people. Poor Kenny just trying to stand up for drugs and you burry him.

    • RayPaulick

       Be assured that comment was not directed toward Ken McPeek. He understands medication reform is needed, and I agree 100% with him on that, but he does so without lying and saying that 70-85% of trainer are cheaters.

      • SJ

        Too bad Mr. McPeek wasn’t honest at the hearing and just said that if thats how he really feels. He said he didn’t think drugs were a problem and he didnt feel it happened at the higher levels. It was recently reported that out of the top 20 trainers in the US only 2 were never cited for medication violations, pretty high percentage wouldn’t you say?  

        • RayPaulick

           A “medication violation” does not mean someone is “cheating.” Nearly every medication violation reported is for a therapeutic drug overage. That is still a problem, because too many trainers are willing to take chances giving those medications right at the withdrawal time guideline. Trainers like Graham Motion, who has never had any kind of violation, has said publicly that if the withdrawal guideline is 72 hours he’ll give the same medication 96 hours or more to be on the safe side.

          The perception is that every trainer with a violation is cheating…and if the perception is widespread enough it becomes reality. We are at that stage now, and have to do something to change that perception. What troubles me about Glenn Thompson is that he is fanning the flames of the perceptions by making outrageous charges that 70-85% of trainers are cheating, without any substantiation.

          My suggestion is that we look at European standards for withdrawal times and adopt those on a national basis. The only way to do so is through some type of federal legislation.

          • SJ

            I understand what you are saying and realize that it can be from medication overage and as you said, it is still a problem. I don’t have the perception that every trainer with a violation is a cheater. I do think however, that there are too many meds given to these horses. I am sure there are other trainers out there like GM that either don’t give meds if they can help it or follow the same rule. If they can do it there is no reason why everyone can’t.

            I am not going to get caught up in percentages but I do believe there is cheating going on. Maybe the numbers are low maybe they are high, I don’t know but it needs to stop. I realize you don’t care for Glenn but I believe his heart to be in the right place.

            At the end of the day despite the difference in opinions whether it be the need for medications, cheating or percentages I think we are all on the same page and just care about the welfare of the horses and jockeys…at least I would hope so anyway.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            “A medication violation does not mean you are cheating” No wonder you cant figure this out, you have not clue!!! If you give, lets say bute, and you push it and go over the limit allowed and get caught, THAT WOULD BE CHEATING, RAY!! If you give Robinol on race day and they pick it up in the test, THAT WOULD BE CHEATING RAY!! COULD YOU PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME AN EXAMPLE WHERE A MEDICATION VIOLATION WAS NOT CHEATING, I AM DYING TO HEAR THIS ONE!!

          • equine

            Agree it is very troubling, especially when a self proclaimed trainer expert goes to the online horse welfare community last week to inform them why he needed to write this book.

            As expected, there was absolutely no mention of how he was unwilling to provide the names, dates, races, etc where these alleged illegal race day medications occurred to stewards, TRPB, or racing commission, enabling them conduct investigations. His logic as reported here in
            Paulick Report comments was because these trainers and vets are friends of his

            specific names, dates, and races in which he alleges these race day medication
            ds,

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray Paulick, I am sorry to say but I think you are not capable of reviewing or verifying anything. You had your chance to verify and review the cheating and failed miserably! And why did you call Kenny McPeek failed, bitter and confused? You should try not to confuse yourself with other people. Poor Kenny just trying to stand up for drugs and you burry him.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Cant take the heat Ray??

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Cant take the heat Ray??

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Well said Jennifer!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Well said Jennifer!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Frank, I train at Monmouth Park and have no problem backing up what Jennifer had to say and if you dont know that it is true then you have no clue what you are talking about. What is your name and what do you do that you think you know so much? Trust me, you dont have a clue!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Frank, I train at Monmouth Park and have no problem backing up what Jennifer had to say and if you dont know that it is true then you have no clue what you are talking about. What is your name and what do you do that you think you know so much? Trust me, you dont have a clue!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Hey Frankie, You are allowed to give 10 ccs 24 hours out from a race and that is pretty significant considering that if you go for surgery the doctor will tell you not to take ANY nsaids within a week of your surgery due to the risk of bleeding!! We are allowed  give it the day before and then wonder why our horses bleed!! Once again Frank, You are the one that does not know what you are talking about!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Hey Frankie, You are allowed to give 10 ccs 24 hours out from a race and that is pretty significant considering that if you go for surgery the doctor will tell you not to take ANY nsaids within a week of your surgery due to the risk of bleeding!! We are allowed  give it the day before and then wonder why our horses bleed!! Once again Frank, You are the one that does not know what you are talking about!!

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    TELL IT LIKE IT IS!!!…TY…

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    with all due respect to Ray as he was run off @ the bloodhorse for speaking his mind wasn’t he???…he must $tuck between the old rock & a hard $pot???…gotta sell AD$ r the pony show stops HEAR…there is a CRACK n the door of the old gaurd & ITS ABOUT TO BEE KICKED N BABY!!!…LONG LIVE THE KING/THE KING IS REALLY “THE HORSE”!!!…

  • DR SLOT

    I’ve already forgotten the name of the last Derby winner and I bet him.

  • DR SLOT

    I’ve already forgotten the name of the last Derby winner and I bet him.

  • Amgm1431

    I’ve been an owner for the last seven years, and I have to say that the press is not being unfair at all.  The N. Y. Times gave the number of breakdowns per track for 500 starts– if they want a story, they should check breakdowns per TRAINER for 500 starts, or even 100.  

    I took home two horses that Doug O Neill trained for myself  and partners.  I even tried to buy the horses away from the partners before they broke down, but the partners and the trainer always wanted “one more race.”   Neither of those horses can be ridden today.  One of them had more pain killers before his last race than he had on any day of the two-year recovery effort.

    In any case, there are many trainers who lack regard for the well-being of horses, and there are many good ones who are appalled at what is happening.   Let’s not waste time pointing fingers (As a friend said, we don’t have enough fingers.)  We need to cut to the chase and make all the drugs illegal.

  • Amgm1431

    I’ve been an owner for the last seven years, and I have to say that the press is not being unfair at all.  The N. Y. Times gave the number of breakdowns per track for 500 starts– if they want a story, they should check breakdowns per TRAINER for 500 starts, or even 100.  

    I took home two horses that Doug O Neill trained for myself  and partners.  I even tried to buy the horses away from the partners before they broke down, but the partners and the trainer always wanted “one more race.”   Neither of those horses can be ridden today.  One of them had more pain killers before his last race than he had on any day of the two-year recovery effort.

    In any case, there are many trainers who lack regard for the well-being of horses, and there are many good ones who are appalled at what is happening.   Let’s not waste time pointing fingers (As a friend said, we don’t have enough fingers.)  We need to cut to the chase and make all the drugs illegal.

  • Brownie

    I got cut out of betting on the day of the Derby, as TVG shut out
    the betting after the post parade before the horses got to the gate.
    Why is no one talking of this? I consider it necessary to see the horses before betting.

  • Brownie

    I got cut out of betting on the day of the Derby, as TVG shut out
    the betting after the post parade before the horses got to the gate.
    Why is no one talking of this? I consider it necessary to see the horses before betting.

  • Damon Runyon

    Very insightful comment. You make an excellent case to ban ALL drugs in Thoroughbred racing.

    I’m sure the Paulick Report simply missed this, but there is a front-page story in today’s New York Times about Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Doug O’Neill and his past drug violations, “A Derby Win, but a Troubled Record for a Trainer”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05

  • RayPaulick

     Be assured that comment was not directed toward Ken McPeek. He understands medication reform is needed, and I agree 100% with him on that, but he does so without lying and saying that 70-85% of trainer are cheaters.

  • RayPaulick

     You’re right, Rob. It’s the big events and the boutique meetings that have done well. There is too much bad racing throughout the year, and I’m afraid with the exception of our few popular events the sport is only as good as its weakest link.

  • RayPaulick

     Wrong on both accounts. We featured the NY Times story on O’Neill prominently today, I have written extensively about O’Neill’s past (Google Doug O’Neill and Ray Paulick).  did not mock The Jockey Club’s effort. I suggested people visit http://www.cleanracing.org if they believed reform was needed and wanted to sign a petition.

    But I am guilty of having some fun. Under the supporter tab, I suggested clicking on all four videos at once and listening to anti-medication chorus..

  • Rob Whiteley

    Perfectly phrased. I wish I could write like you … and you do it day in and day out !

  • GC

    Ray, since bute is a blood thinner, it may be the reason so many horses bleed and could be the only reason they need lasix. Too many trainers give bute just in case.

  • SJ

    Too bad Mr. McPeek wasn’t honest at the hearing and just said that if thats how he really feels. He said he didn’t think drugs were a problem and he didnt feel it happened at the higher levels. It was recently reported that out of the top 20 trainers in the US only 2 were never cited for medication violations, pretty high percentage wouldn’t you say?  

  • Nucky Thompson

    Hey Ray , I don’t know if you caught it but Joe Drape was on NPR the other day doing another hatchet job . Was at my pub last night and one of me friends who knows nothing about racing was disturbed enough to mention it to me.

  • Nucky Thompson

    Hey Ray , I don’t know if you caught it but Joe Drape was on NPR the other day doing another hatchet job . Was at my pub last night and one of me friends who knows nothing about racing was disturbed enough to mention it to me.

  • commonsenseprevails

    Milkshake? A mixture of baking soda,sugar,and eletrolytes to combat fatigue. That sounds horrible! Where can I get 1 of those? 

  • Dc

    I really wish you wouldn’t lumping everyone together, NOT everyone is pushing the envelope so to speak, you sound like a bitter vindictive old lady.I am not saying there are not problems there are, but there are more good people on the backside than bad, and you are not being fair to those of us that love horses and racing and play by the book. Maybe you should talk to a few of us and relate those stories.

     

  • Fdoos

    What you should be concerned about Ray is not necessarily what they are saying because if it is true it needs to be fixed and should be addressed.  Lets start with the number of horses that are bred each year, the number of foals, the horses that don’t make it to the grade one races, the horses that end up in the claimers, the horses that are left behind and end up in kill pens.  Lets start at the bottom such as a fund for every horse born and fees/tax that must be paid a birth, upon each sale, upon each race entered.  The entire industry requires fixing.  They need to start at the bottom and move up.

  • Fdoos

    What you should be concerned about Ray is not necessarily what they are saying because if it is true it needs to be fixed and should be addressed.  Lets start with the number of horses that are bred each year, the number of foals, the horses that don’t make it to the grade one races, the horses that end up in the claimers, the horses that are left behind and end up in kill pens.  Lets start at the bottom such as a fund for every horse born and fees/tax that must be paid a birth, upon each sale, upon each race entered.  The entire industry requires fixing.  They need to start at the bottom and move up.

  • larry from newyack

    bring avioli back — where is he anyway? maybe he can save the stronach group — oops he made that operation in the red in just a year … but paulick and he are friends so no bad press has ever been written about how he drove the breeders cup — ntra — into the ground

  • larry from newyack

    bring avioli back — where is he anyway? maybe he can save the stronach group — oops he made that operation in the red in just a year … but paulick and he are friends so no bad press has ever been written about how he drove the breeders cup — ntra — into the ground

  • Neville

    http://www.jockeysite.com/stor…  here is some background on what a “milkshake” is and what it is used for. I would recommend that you read the whole thing, but the following two paragraphs were, in my opinion, the most important:
     
    “The concept with milkshaking is that if you can increase the alkalinity of the
    blood (pH of the blood), this would buffer the build-up of lactate. In human
    terms (albeit simplistically), this equate to the tightening of muscles athletes
    experience towards the end of strenuous exercise. By increasing the pH of the
    blood, you can remove or delay that effect, therefore not run faster, but rather
    maintain your maximum speed for longer.”
     
    and
     
    “Screening for the illict use of bicarbonate resulted for two reasons: 1. There
    was a perception (at the very least) that people were receiving an unfair
    advantage through this practice and 2. The practice may also be undertaken to
    try and mask the administration of other prohibited substances.”
     
    Or this well-researched and well-written piece from the The Thoroughbred Times  in 2004:  http://www.thoroughbredtimes.c
     
    “In most cases, over-trained, under-trained, or poorly trained individuals benefit from the administration of alkalising agents, as opposed to a horse that is nutritionally and metabolically fit and of sound structure.”
     
    FINALLY … What is the ingestion of Bicarbonate actually doing to the horse? 
    Bicarbonate loading can produce negative effects. Human athletes who follow this  regimen report side effects such as intestinal discomfort, stomach distress, nausea, cramping, diarrhea, and water retention. Although bicarbonate loading in human competition is not banned, it does have serious health-related consequences. Bicarbonate loading increases blood alkalinity and influences high blood pressure.
     
    The following was posted on the forum discussion on this very subject at the website themanestreet.com:
     
    “Tubing that amount of baking soda into the digestive tract is extremely damaging
    to the horse, the sludge will impact and burn the surface of the gut. Impaction
    colic after the race is fairly common when this practice is used, as well as gut
    scarring. Therefore, it is only used by trainers and owners with little long
    term horse sense or care about the horse as an individual, as well as those who
    are morally bankrupt enough to think that cheating or attempting to cheat is OK.

     
    So the bottom line on Milkshaking is:
    1. It is cheating.
    2. It is used by trainers who cannot adequately train the horse for the distance of the race.
    3. It masks other banned substances.
    4. It is an unhealthy thing to pump into a horse’s stomach.

  • commonsenseprevails

    Again referencing an Austrailian study where you can train on Lasix but when a horse really needs it to prevent internal damage, They can’t have it. Sorry no credibility with me. We are in America,we have the best racing in the world! The days of milkshaking every horse and running on synthetic morphine are over. The only thing thoroughbreds get on race day now is lasix to prevent pulmonary hemorrhaging,given the choice I think any horse would opt for the shot instead of waterboarding.

  • commonsenseprevails

    The government does such a fantastic job with everything it touches! that’s just what racing needs, certain death!

  • Neville

    So …. bicarbonate only buffers lactid acid within the confines of Australia?

  • Upstart

    What is your problem…seriously?  Get your own blog and then lets see how many show up.

  • RayPaulick

     A “medication violation” does not mean someone is “cheating.” Nearly every medication violation reported is for a therapeutic drug overage. That is still a problem, because too many trainers are willing to take chances giving those medications right at the withdrawal time guideline. Trainers like Graham Motion, who has never had any kind of violation, has said publicly that if the withdrawal guideline is 72 hours he’ll give the same medication 96 hours or more to be on the safe side.

    The perception is that every trainer with a violation is cheating…and if the perception is widespread enough it becomes reality. We are at that stage now, and have to do something to change that perception. What troubles me about Glenn Thompson is that he is fanning the flames of the perceptions by making outrageous charges that 70-85% of trainers are cheating, without any substantiation.

    My suggestion is that we look at European standards for withdrawal times and adopt those on a national basis. The only way to do so is through some type of federal legislation.

  • RayPaulick

    My position on medication was clearly stated during the TVG Roundtable. I thought the producers did a good job of getting a cross-section of opinion. I don’t believe we need to over-dramatize U.S. racing’s medication problem (i.e., stating that 70-85% of trainers and vets are cheaters, as Glenn Thompson does, without any substantiation). I do believe change is needed.

    The entire TVG Roundtable is worth seeing, but my position is stated at the 53:45 mark. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmzEtu2Yktc

    • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

      Ray,

      It is obvious you are in a no win situation.  I have given you a hard time for being anti-meds w/o knowing all the details and now you are being accused of conforming to the “old guard” and wanting no change.  The nonsense from Glenn is just that and I have no idea how people can think you are pro meds or anti-change.

      I guess the one thing we can definitely agree on is that Glenn is all about self-promotion and his claims of 85% cheating are absolutely ridiculous and without any merit.  I know Glenn, no trainers have responded to your claims so you must be correct (this is the only real “proof” you have so keep running with it).  Forget about about the fact that you are an insignificant trainer in a game who is promoting your book….why would anyone even bother responding to someone like this?

      The fact he was on an panel is the only thing more pathetic than his claims.

      • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

        Hey Stewey, I just feel the need to point out to Ray that he is a very poor reporter, and suprisingly enough so are a lot of the other reporters that are covering the sport. For them to not know the truth about how bad things are back here is a very clear indication that they are not very good at their job. If it was my job as a reporter to find out the truth about racing, I would! I would talk with trainers off the record, I would talk with Asst. Trainers off the record, I would talk with people that have retired and find out the truth. Talk with vets that have retired or talk with vets assistants but come hell or high water I would find out the truth. Ray is a hack or he knows the truth and does not want to admit it here.Either way he is useless as an investigative reporter and should look to do something else for a living.

        • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

          Glenn,

          Since 1991, I have won almost 3 times as many races as an owner than you have as a trainer (this says more about you as a trainer for multiple owners than it does about me as an owner).  I’m glad you are proud of a couple of track records but I can’t imagine you are so proud of a lifetime win % of roughly 6%, and ITM % of roughly 30% and an earnings per start of roughly 2.5K.  These numbers are pathetic based on any standards.  So yes Glenn, these numbers do make you an insignificant part of the game and you are a very poor horseman, have no clue what you are talking about or both.

          I am not defending Ray, I am pointing out the irony of him getting ragged on from both sides of an argument.  If you actually read what I wrote you would understand this.  Of course I also used my post as an opportunity to call you out for being dishonest and/or delusional about your “85%” claims.

          As much as I hate to agree with you about anything, I do get frustrated with the lack of real reporting on this site.  But I also have come to accept that this really isn’t an original news site, it is a news aggregation site w/ a forum that draws traffic and advertisers.  They throw in some original content from time to time but I don’t think this is a core part of the business model (I could be wrong but the content really speaks for itself).

          Your 85% cheating claim is a joke, your record as a trainer is a joke and your ramblings on this forum are a joke.  But hey, I bet you felt pretty good about yourself when replying to me as “Stewey”…that was original and showed guts and class.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Stewart, Who were your trainers and what name did you run under?? If you dont think my 85% number is real, get one of your trainers or vets to take a public stand. You wont be able to because I feel pretty confident that they were in the group.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            Come on Glenn, as an investigative reporter you should already know who I am, what Stable names I have run under, the name of my 1st born child and all other relevant information about me personally and professionally.

            No trainer or vet is ever going to get on a “public stand” to defend themselves against someone with absolutely, positively no credibility whatsoever.  You have one hell of an ego, I will give you that.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            You guys all come up with the same lame stuff. The truth is that no vet or trainer is going to stand up because they know I.m right. You dont even need them just send me your vet bills or are you scared to do that too?? Did you read the reviews on the book, several people validate my claims. Trainers, Vets Ect.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            I thought you never mentioned your book? 

            Not defending claims when the claims have no credibility is logical, not lame. 

            Kind of like accusing someone of a crime when they were in another country at the time but demanding they take the stand to prove that they still could have done the crime even though they were thousands of miles away.  Would you actually engage with the person accusing you or say “man, this guy is either nuts or full of it and I am not going to waste my time”?

            Lifetime win % of roughly 6%, an ITM % of roughly 30% and an earnings per start of roughly 2.5K.   You have no credibility and probably should find another career (have you ever thought about writing a book?).

      • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

        Stewey, Couple other things I do want to point out to you. I have had six or seven post on this forum and not once did I mention my book, so you know where you can put that!! Also was wondering if you can find another trainer that holds two track records at the same track, anywhere in the country. I hold two at Monmouth Park on the turf. One with Two Notch Road, whom I bought for twenty five hundred and the other with a NJ Bred General Perfect who was eight years old last year and set it on a yeilding turf course.Not too bad for an insignificant trainer. I will tell you who is insignificant and that would be our Derby winning trainer with his 12 breakdowns and 19 positives. He should have his liscense taken away and have a restraining order that he is not allowed within 500 yards of a horse. What do you do for a living Stewey?? Tell us all the truth so we can all see how truly insignigicant YOU ARE!! Are you in the horse industry or are you just an idiot that thinks they know what they are talking about??

        • dh

          Glenn,
          If you click on Stewart Nickel it will take you to his website where he has info on his racing partnerships. It says he uses trainers Scott Lake and Hugh Mcmahon, are you familiar with these 2 guys. If so, please elaborate.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            As I have told you before “DH”, Scott hasn’t trained a horse for me in (3) years (since he moved his stable out of Maryland)…Hugh is my primary trainer and Dove and Mike get some horses from time to time.

            That doesn’t mean I don’t respect Scott and think he got a bad rap due to sloppy stable management and threshold tests across State lines.  But nonetheless, he doesn’t currently train any horses for me.

            Can’t wait to hear what the sleuth has to say about Hugh McMahon (or Dove or Mike for that matter).  This should be interesting.

          • dh

            sorry for the mis-info. I was just baiting Glenn, I can’t wait either.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Stewart, I know nothing about your other trainers but they all have nice pictures on your website and look like nice people. You keep avoiding the question about you sending your vet bills. You can just send the ones from 2012. That would probably be enough.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            Glenn,

            Send me your tax returns for the last (10) years and then I will consider sending you my business bills.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Stewart, I didn’t think so!!! Just like the rest of them, a lot of talk but when push comes to shove and you have to stand up, you sit down just like the rest of the cheaters! Just stay seated Stewart, you have proven my point and I have no interest in discussing it with you any longer. Good luck with your horses, I hope you do well and play by the rules.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            Nice chatting w/ you.  Let me know when I will be receiving your tax returns.

            I will now proceed to sit in the cheater corner because you have clearly proven thorugh a very scientific approach that I am part of the dreaded 85%.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            I am a common sense sort of guy Stewart. When OJ Simpson was driving around in his white bronco with 10,000 cash, a passport and a disguise the trial would have been over right there, case closed. Not one person in the whole racing world will stand up and prove me wrong, not one. Case Closed. You still refuse to answer many of the questions that I ask you??
            1. Did you read the book?
            2. Did you look at the reviews where a lot of qualified people back up my claims?
            3. Do you hold any track records with those champions you have?
            4. How much money have you spent buying those champions you have?
            5. How many of those wins that you had with Scott do you think would hold up if the truth were known???
            5. What do you think the real reason not one person will challange my claims. And try and be original, dont use the same lame excuse that the rest of the idiots have used.

          • Bristling

            Glenn you need help.

          • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

            And someone thought an individual with this mentality was qualified to testify before a “congressional hearing”.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Do you hold any track records with any of those superstars you have had over the years???

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Did you read my book Stewart?? And what about those reviews? You never did answer that either??

        • desertrailrat

           Glenn, I do side with you on most points you make not because you told me so, because I already felt that way due to my own experience.  But having and argument with an buffoon like Frank L. only “gives you fleas”.  Stewart at least can make a point so although I disagree with him, I’ll leave him out of it.  And as far as Ray goes, this website is his business, and as much as I don’t like it when the stories he personally has interest in stay on the front page and whenever the hot button stories start taking a turn on the blog posts against people he likes they instantly disappear from the front page, it’s still his name on the top of the site.  I have to say it’s impressive that Ray puts up your posts bashing him for, can’t say if I am a big enough man to do that.  Keep it up though, I think your heart is in the right place and I’ve had enough of this industry “putting up the curtain” and trying to fool everybody in every way possible.    

          • dh

            good point d-rat, I thought I was the only one who noticed Rays way of moving stories around. Perfect example, the barrel racing story which no one cares about is still front page, 14 comments in 8 days, but the Doug O’neill story, over 200 comments in 4 days, disappears to the back of the bus. At least Ray prints these controversial stories that no one else does, but it is only a half-ass attempt, and that is not going to change anything. Until the media, PR included, starts asking the tough questions guys like Oneill will continue the charade.

          • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

            Thanks Desert, Why does Ray and the rest of this group think I am lying? I didn’t want to write my book!! Struggled with doing it for two years.But like you said someone had to pull back the curtain and I care enough about the horses and the sport to do it.

      • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

        Stewart, Did Scott Lake used to train for you?? And if so would you mind sending me your vet bills while he was? We might be able to get to the bottom of this fairly simply. Sorry about calling you Stewey my brothers name is Stewart, just an old habit. I used to call him that when he pissed me off.

        • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

          Glenn,

          Yes Scott did train for me and no, I would never send any vet or other of the myriad of bills I pay to anyone outside of my Partnerships for many reasons.  Conspiracy theories aside, there are privacy issues both from a professional courtesy standpoint as well as a business structure standpoint that would prohibit this.  And even if this wasn’t the case, I don’t know you and have no reason in the world to send you anything.

          Cue the “if you don’t have anything to hide you would send me the vet bill” nonsense.

    • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

      Ray Paulick, It is your job to substantiate it!! I gave you the story and you were supose to investigate it and if you did a good job at investigating it you would have substantiated it. For some reason you are not capable of doing a good job with this and the only real explanation is that you are on the other side of the fence. Dont worry, I know where you come from and I simply feel sorry for you.

  • RayPaulick

    My position on medication was clearly stated during the TVG Roundtable. I thought the producers did a good job of getting a cross-section of opinion. I don’t believe we need to over-dramatize U.S. racing’s medication problem (i.e., stating that 70-85% of trainers and vets are cheaters, as Glenn Thompson does, without any substantiation). I do believe change is needed.

    The entire TVG Roundtable is worth seeing, but my position is stated at the 53:45 mark. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Ray,

    It is obvious you are in a no win situation.  I have given you a hard time for being anti-meds w/o knowing all the details and now you are being accused of conforming to the “old guard” and wanting no change.  The nonsense from Glenn is just that and I have no idea how people can think you are pro meds or anti-change.

    I guess the one thing we can definitely agree on is that Glenn is all about self-promotion and his claims of 85% cheating are absolutely ridiculous and without any merit.  I know Glenn, no trainers have responded to your claims so you must be correct (this is the only real “proof” you have so keep running with it).  Forget about about the fact that you are an insignificant trainer in a game who is promoting your book….why would anyone even bother responding to someone like this?

    The fact he was on an panel is the only thing more pathetic than his claims.

  • SJ

    I understand what you are saying and realize that it can be from medication overage and as you said, it is still a problem. I don’t have the perception that every trainer with a violation is a cheater. I do think however, that there are too many meds given to these horses. I am sure there are other trainers out there like GM that either don’t give meds if they can help it or follow the same rule. If they can do it there is no reason why everyone can’t.

    I am not going to get caught up in percentages but I do believe there is cheating going on. Maybe the numbers are low maybe they are high, I don’t know but it needs to stop. I realize you don’t care for Glenn but I believe his heart to be in the right place.

    At the end of the day despite the difference in opinions whether it be the need for medications, cheating or percentages I think we are all on the same page and just care about the welfare of the horses and jockeys…at least I would hope so anyway.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Hey Stewey, I just feel the need to point out to Ray that he is a very poor reporter, and suprisingly enough so are a lot of the other reporters that are covering the sport. For them to not know the truth about how bad things are back here is a very clear indication that they are not very good at their job. If it was my job as a reporter to find out the truth about racing, I would! I would talk with trainers off the record, I would talk with Asst. Trainers off the record, I would talk with people that have retired and find out the truth. Talk with vets that have retired or talk with vets assistants but come hell or high water I would find out the truth. Ray is a hack or he knows the truth and does not want to admit it here.Either way he is useless as an investigative reporter and should look to do something else for a living.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Stewey, Couple other things I do want to point out to you. I have had six or seven post on this forum and not once did I mention my book, so you know where you can put that!! Also was wondering if you can find another trainer that holds two track records at the same track, anywhere in the country. I hold two at Monmouth Park on the turf. One with Two Notch Road, whom I bought for twenty five hundred and the other with a NJ Bred General Perfect who was eight years old last year and set it on a yeilding turf course.Not too bad for an insignificant trainer. I will tell you who is insignificant and that would be our Derby winning trainer with his 12 breakdowns and 19 positives. He should have his liscense taken away and have a restraining order that he is not allowed within 500 yards of a horse. What do you do for a living Stewey?? Tell us all the truth so we can all see how truly insignigicant YOU ARE!! Are you in the horse industry or are you just an idiot that thinks they know what they are talking about??

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Ray Paulick, It is your job to substantiate it!! I gave you the story and you were supose to investigate it and if you did a good job at investigating it you would have substantiated it. For some reason you are not capable of doing a good job with this and the only real explanation is that you are on the other side of the fence. Dont worry, I know where you come from and I simply feel sorry for you.

  • Bristling

    The main reason it’s in trouble is because it is too watered down.

  • Bristling

    Frank do you live in America ? Performance enhancing drugs is running rampant in racing. And the commissions don’t have a clue how to or what to test for.

  • Bristling

    I agree with some of the things you said but if trainers are dropping in sore horses then the state vets need to do a better job and check these horses.

  • Bristling

    Bute is NOT the problem

  • dh

    Glenn,
    If you click on Stewart Nickel it will take you to his website where he has info on his racing partnerships. It says he uses trainers Scott Lake and Hugh Mcmahon, are you familiar with these 2 guys. If so, please elaborate.

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Glenn,

    Since 1991, I have won almost 3 times as many races as an owner than you have as a trainer (this says more about you as a trainer for multiple owners than it does about me as an owner).  I’m glad you are proud of a couple of track records but I can’t imagine you are so proud of a lifetime win % of roughly 6%, and ITM % of roughly 30% and an earnings per start of roughly 2.5K.  These numbers are pathetic based on any standards.  So yes Glenn, these numbers do make you an insignificant part of the game and you are a very poor horseman, have no clue what you are talking about or both.

    I am not defending Ray, I am pointing out the irony of him getting ragged on from both sides of an argument.  If you actually read what I wrote you would understand this.  Of course I also used my post as an opportunity to call you out for being dishonest and/or delusional about your “85%” claims.

    As much as I hate to agree with you about anything, I do get frustrated with the lack of real reporting on this site.  But I also have come to accept that this really isn’t an original news site, it is a news aggregation site w/ a forum that draws traffic and advertisers.  They throw in some original content from time to time but I don’t think this is a core part of the business model (I could be wrong but the content really speaks for itself).

    Your 85% cheating claim is a joke, your record as a trainer is a joke and your ramblings on this forum are a joke.  But hey, I bet you felt pretty good about yourself when replying to me as “Stewey”…that was original and showed guts and class.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    “A medication violation does not mean you are cheating” No wonder you cant figure this out, you have not clue!!! If you give, lets say bute, and you push it and go over the limit allowed and get caught, THAT WOULD BE CHEATING, RAY!! If you give Robinol on race day and they pick it up in the test, THAT WOULD BE CHEATING RAY!! COULD YOU PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME AN EXAMPLE WHERE A MEDICATION VIOLATION WAS NOT CHEATING, I AM DYING TO HEAR THIS ONE!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Stewart, Who were your trainers and what name did you run under?? If you dont think my 85% number is real, get one of your trainers or vets to take a public stand. You wont be able to because I feel pretty confident that they were in the group.

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    As I have told you before “DH”, Scott hasn’t trained a horse for me in (3) years (since he moved his stable out of Maryland)…Hugh is my primary trainer and Dove and Mike get some horses from time to time.

    That doesn’t mean I don’t respect Scott and think he got a bad rap due to sloppy stable management and threshold tests across State lines.  But nonetheless, he doesn’t currently train any horses for me.

    Can’t wait to hear what the sleuth has to say about Hugh McMahon (or Dove or Mike for that matter).  This should be interesting.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Stewart, Did Scott Lake used to train for you?? And if so would you mind sending me your vet bills while he was? We might be able to get to the bottom of this fairly simply. Sorry about calling you Stewey my brothers name is Stewart, just an old habit. I used to call him that when he pissed me off.

  • desertrailrat

     Glenn, I do side with you on most points you make not because you told me so, because I already felt that way due to my own experience.  But having and argument with an buffoon like Frank L. only “gives you fleas”.  Stewart at least can make a point so although I disagree with him, I’ll leave him out of it.  And as far as Ray goes, this website is his business, and as much as I don’t like it when the stories he personally has interest in stay on the front page and whenever the hot button stories start taking a turn on the blog posts against people he likes they instantly disappear from the front page, it’s still his name on the top of the site.  I have to say it’s impressive that Ray puts up your posts bashing him for, can’t say if I am a big enough man to do that.  Keep it up though, I think your heart is in the right place and I’ve had enough of this industry “putting up the curtain” and trying to fool everybody in every way possible.    

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Come on Glenn, as an investigative reporter you should already know who I am, what Stable names I have run under, the name of my 1st born child and all other relevant information about me personally and professionally.

    No trainer or vet is ever going to get on a “public stand” to defend themselves against someone with absolutely, positively no credibility whatsoever.  You have one hell of an ego, I will give you that.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    You guys all come up with the same lame stuff. The truth is that no vet or trainer is going to stand up because they know I.m right. You dont even need them just send me your vet bills or are you scared to do that too?? Did you read the reviews on the book, several people validate my claims. Trainers, Vets Ect.

  • dh

    sorry for the mis-info. I was just baiting Glenn, I can’t wait either.

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    I thought you never mentioned your book? 

    Not defending claims when the claims have no credibility is logical, not lame. 

    Kind of like accusing someone of a crime when they were in another country at the time but demanding they take the stand to prove that they still could have done the crime even though they were thousands of miles away.  Would you actually engage with the person accusing you or say “man, this guy is either nuts or full of it and I am not going to waste my time”?

    Lifetime win % of roughly 6%, an ITM % of roughly 30% and an earnings per start of roughly 2.5K.   You have no credibility and probably should find another career (have you ever thought about writing a book?).

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Stewart, I know nothing about your other trainers but they all have nice pictures on your website and look like nice people. You keep avoiding the question about you sending your vet bills. You can just send the ones from 2012. That would probably be enough.

  • dh

    good point d-rat, I thought I was the only one who noticed Rays way of moving stories around. Perfect example, the barrel racing story which no one cares about is still front page, 14 comments in 8 days, but the Doug O’neill story, over 200 comments in 4 days, disappears to the back of the bus. At least Ray prints these controversial stories that no one else does, but it is only a half-ass attempt, and that is not going to change anything. Until the media, PR included, starts asking the tough questions guys like Oneill will continue the charade.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Do you hold any track records with any of those superstars you have had over the years???

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Did you read my book Stewart?? And what about those reviews? You never did answer that either??

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Glenn,

    Yes Scott did train for me and no, I would never send any vet or other of the myriad of bills I pay to anyone outside of my Partnerships for many reasons.  Conspiracy theories aside, there are privacy issues both from a professional courtesy standpoint as well as a business structure standpoint that would prohibit this.  And even if this wasn’t the case, I don’t know you and have no reason in the world to send you anything.

    Cue the “if you don’t have anything to hide you would send me the vet bill” nonsense.

  • NPetrillo

    JC – You are right, the concern should be – how right are the news reports.  I think after years of discussion, reports and studies everyone knows where there is smoke there is  fire – actually a fire storm.  No one in the industry or outside it has the guts or courage to stand up and take the proper action to protect these horses from humans who do damage to them.  As foals they are taught to trust the very people who eventually will betray them and for whom they lay their lives on the line every time they run.  It is a monstrous betrayal across the whole industry.  After all – they are only farm animals under agriculture so they are expendable-that seems to be owners and trainers thinking.  That being said, I really am not excited by I’ll Have Another’s win in the Derby – IMO given Doug O’Neill’s past drugging infractions there is a dark shadow on how IHA got the win.  And NO, I do not think he is a TC horse – unless he is drugged!   Union Rags was boxed in by Desmoreux and Calvin, he had no opportunity to move out let alone room to go – might be legal, but it is dirty tactics – almost like a fix was in.  I think the whole derby was a mess.  Horse racing which I love, because I love horses has definitely got a putrid smell to it now.  I’m done with it once the TC is over.

    • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

      Dont give up yet Npetrillo, we are just getting started. Change is coming! Your post made me sad because I feel like you are a true fan and you love horses. Give us six months and you will see a lot of changes, I promise!!

    • Bristling

      The horsemans group at Parx is going to implement changes for the betterment of the horse and for racing.

    • Stanley inman

      I agree with your concern for the horse.
      The organized horsemen’s groups are responsible
      for the LIBERAL drug use in the sport.
      Why do I make that charge?
      It’s an economic issue for their members.
      Take bute. Everybody races on it in my barn, shedrow state.
      When the RCI wanted to lower the usage, every horsemens group resisted.
      My horse can be sore,( most are sometime-even the derby winner was a “bit tight” in the back leading up to the derby- we use to call that” sore” but political correctness has changed how we speak.)
      With bute and, if I catch an easy field- voila, I’m getting my picture taken in the winners circle.
      So our liberal drug policy, plus sore horse plus easy fieldmeans I can pay my bills.
      It’s economic, the horsemen don’t have the courage to admit it.

  • NPetrillo

    JC – You are right, the concern should be – how right are the news reports.  I think after years of discussion, reports and studies everyone knows where there is smoke there is  fire – actually a fire storm.  No one in the industry or outside it has the guts or courage to stand up and take the proper action to protect these horses from humans who do damage to them.  As foals they are taught to trust the very people who eventually will betray them and for whom they lay their lives on the line every time they run.  It is a monstrous betrayal across the whole industry.  After all – they are only farm animals under agriculture so they are expendable-that seems to be owners and trainers thinking.  That being said, I really am not excited by I’ll Have Another’s win in the Derby – IMO given Doug O’Neill’s past drugging infractions there is a dark shadow on how IHA got the win.  And NO, I do not think he is a TC horse – unless he is drugged!   Union Rags was boxed in by Desmoreux and Calvin, he had no opportunity to move out let alone room to go – might be legal, but it is dirty tactics – almost like a fix was in.  I think the whole derby was a mess.  Horse racing which I love, because I love horses has definitely got a putrid smell to it now.  I’m done with it once the TC is over.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Thanks Desert, Why does Ray and the rest of this group think I am lying? I didn’t want to write my book!! Struggled with doing it for two years.But like you said someone had to pull back the curtain and I care enough about the horses and the sport to do it.

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Glenn,

    Send me your tax returns for the last (10) years and then I will consider sending you my business bills.

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Dont give up yet Npetrillo, we are just getting started. Change is coming! Your post made me sad because I feel like you are a true fan and you love horses. Give us six months and you will see a lot of changes, I promise!!

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Stewart, I didn’t think so!!! Just like the rest of them, a lot of talk but when push comes to shove and you have to stand up, you sit down just like the rest of the cheaters! Just stay seated Stewart, you have proven my point and I have no interest in discussing it with you any longer. Good luck with your horses, I hope you do well and play by the rules.

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    Nice chatting w/ you.  Let me know when I will be receiving your tax returns.

    I will now proceed to sit in the cheater corner because you have clearly proven thorugh a very scientific approach that I am part of the dreaded 85%.

  • http://twitter.com/cmdevereux Mark Devereux

    Frankly, IMO, the most important thing you said in this article is the “brief, flickering spotlight”. You’re completely right and, unless this sport gets it act together, that flickering light is going to become so dim as to be irrelevant for most. When people like Baffert come out with drama-queen tweets saying they’ll recommend all their owners sell their broodmares if race-day lasix is banned, I don’t hold out much hope for the sport in the USA…

  • http://twitter.com/cmdevereux Mark Devereux

    Frankly, IMO, the most important thing you said in this article is the “brief, flickering spotlight”. You’re completely right and, unless this sport gets it act together, that flickering light is going to become so dim as to be irrelevant for most. When people like Baffert come out with drama-queen tweets saying they’ll recommend all their owners sell their broodmares if race-day lasix is banned, I don’t hold out much hope for the sport in the USA…

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    I am a common sense sort of guy Stewart. When OJ Simpson was driving around in his white bronco with 10,000 cash, a passport and a disguise the trial would have been over right there, case closed. Not one person in the whole racing world will stand up and prove me wrong, not one. Case Closed. You still refuse to answer many of the questions that I ask you??
    1. Did you read the book?
    2. Did you look at the reviews where a lot of qualified people back up my claims?
    3. Do you hold any track records with those champions you have?
    4. How much money have you spent buying those champions you have?
    5. How many of those wins that you had with Scott do you think would hold up if the truth were known???
    5. What do you think the real reason not one person will challange my claims. And try and be original, dont use the same lame excuse that the rest of the idiots have used.

  • Bristling

    The horsemans group at Parx is going to implement changes for the betterment of the horse and for racing.

  • Bristling

    Glenn you need help.

  • Bristling

    I think the biggest problem here is Glenn’s defination of “cheating” or “cheaters”, cause if he thinks giving a horse bute or banamine and lasix is cheating then yes his numbers are correct. I consider cheating when a trainer gives performance enhancing drugs(EPO, ITTP). And without out of competition testing this will never be stopped. Also how come no one blames the owners for giving thier horses to the “juice” trainers they must know what is going on but they just don’t care as long as they are putting money into thier bank accounts. But I feel they are just as much to blame.

    • SJ

      In the book there is mention of the medications Amicar, Kentucky Red, Robinol, Clotol, Azium and Bleeder RX. I am not a trainer so I am going to ask if anyone  knows if these meds are being used?

      • Bristling

        They are not you can use azium still in NJ and that is the only state you can and only azium.

        • Bristling

          And that is a fact

          • SJ

            Since I did not get much of a response here. I have been asking around and even called the racing commission and pretty much got the same answer from all, no one really knows what is tested for and they do not want you to know which makes sense. It also differs from state to state, so to say that is a fact is not correct unless of course you work there and do the testing yourself.

            In searching the web and looking for answers I came across posted vet bills with medications and procedures a mile long, one was a Kentucky Derby contender from a few years ago. The RMTC recent rulings is pages long and advises that is not a complete list. Yes, some of it states to be overages but there are also injectable bottles vet use only, possession of foreign substance, syringes with injectable drugs, possession of unlabeled tabs and the list goes on and on.

            To say none of those listed medications are possibly being used or maybe others in my opinion is naive. I know it is not everyone doing this but it appears to be more then one would hope. If anyone has documentation to the contrary I would be happy to see it.

        • SJ

          I am just trying to understand this better. I thought Lasix was the only permissible med in 24 hours? Do they test for these medications and if not how would anyone know?

          • Bristling

            I know a few years ago in Maryland and Delaware horses would run on lasix and adjunct meds, it was noted in the program next to the horse “LA” Lasix and adjuct. You can no longer run on adjuct meds in PA or NJ. You can run on azium in NJ and no where else. And yes they do test.

          • SJ

            Azium is okay on raceday or is there a cut off? Where can I find a list of what is tested on raceday? I have been doing a search and cannot find anything and I would like to see this for myself.

      • Bristling

        Robinol has not been used on race day for years. You haven’t been able to use robinol on race day for 20 years.

    • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

      Bristling, I cant believe you have been busting my chops and have not read the book. If you cant afford it send me your email and I will send you a copy.

  • Bristling

    I think the biggest problem here is Glenn’s defination of “cheating” or “cheaters”, cause if he thinks giving a horse bute or banamine and lasix is cheating then yes his numbers are correct. I consider cheating when a trainer gives performance enhancing drugs(EPO, ITTP). And without out of competition testing this will never be stopped. Also how come no one blames the owners for giving thier horses to the “juice” trainers they must know what is going on but they just don’t care as long as they are putting money into thier bank accounts. But I feel they are just as much to blame.

  • Jaclyn21

    Call Doug O’Neill or Jeff Mullins! Or just go to the backstretch at any track in California!

  • equine

    Agree it is very troubling, especially when a self proclaimed trainer expert goes to the online horse welfare community last week to inform them why he needed to write this book.

    As expected, there was absolutely no mention of how he was unwilling to provide the names, dates, races, etc where these alleged illegal race day medications occurred to stewards, TRPB, or racing commission, enabling them conduct investigations. His logic as reported here in
    Paulick Report comments was because these trainers and vets are friends of his

    specific names, dates, and races in which he alleges these race day medication
    ds,

  • http://www.winnerscirclepartners.com/ Stewart Nickel

    And someone thought an individual with this mentality was qualified to testify before a “congressional hearing”.

  • SJ

    In the book there is mention of the medications Amicar, Kentucky Red, Robinol, Clotol, Azium and Bleeder RX. I am not a trainer so I am going to ask if anyone  knows if these meds are being used?

  • http://twitter.com/Daresoar Glenn Thompson

    Bristling, I cant believe you have been busting my chops and have not read the book. If you cant afford it send me your email and I will send you a copy.

  • Bristling

    They are not you can use azium still in NJ and that is the only state you can and only azium.

  • Bristling

    And that is a fact

  • SJ

    I am just trying to understand this better. I thought Lasix was the only permissible med in 24 hours? Do they test for these medications and if not how would anyone know?

  • Bristling

    I know a few years ago in Maryland and Delaware horses would run on lasix and adjunct meds, it was noted in the program next to the horse “LA” Lasix and adjuct. You can no longer run on adjuct meds in PA or NJ. You can run on azium in NJ and no where else. And yes they do test.

  • Bristling

    Robinol has not been used on race day for years. You haven’t been able to use robinol on race day for 20 years.

  • Bristling

    If anyone wants some good reading go to govermentlaw.org, Silent Tom Smith yyes the same Tom Smith that trained Seabiscuit, he was suspended for one year in 1945

  • Bristling

    If anyone wants some good reading go to govermentlaw.org, Silent Tom Smith yyes the same Tom Smith that trained Seabiscuit, he was suspended for one year in 1945

  • Bristling

    govermentlaw.org/files/the__and_silent_tom_smith.pdf

  • Bristling
  • SJ

    Azium is okay on raceday or is there a cut off? Where can I find a list of what is tested on raceday? I have been doing a search and cannot find anything and I would like to see this for myself.

  • Stanley inman

    I agree with your concern for the horse.
    The organized horsemen’s groups are responsible
    for the LIBERAL drug use in the sport.
    Why do I make that charge?
    It’s an economic issue for their members.
    Take bute. Everybody races on it in my barn, shedrow state.
    When the RCI wanted to lower the usage, every horsemens group resisted.
    My horse can be sore,( most are sometime-even the derby winner was a “bit tight” in the back leading up to the derby- we use to call that” sore” but political correctness has changed how we speak.)
    With bute and, if I catch an easy field- voila, I’m getting my picture taken in the winners circle.
    So our liberal drug policy, plus sore horse plus easy fieldmeans I can pay my bills.
    It’s economic, the horsemen don’t have the courage to admit it.

  • SJ

    Since I did not get much of a response here. I have been asking around and even called the racing commission and pretty much got the same answer from all, no one really knows what is tested for and they do not want you to know which makes sense. It also differs from state to state, so to say that is a fact is not correct unless of course you work there and do the testing yourself.

    In searching the web and looking for answers I came across posted vet bills with medications and procedures a mile long, one was a Kentucky Derby contender from a few years ago. The RMTC recent rulings is pages long and advises that is not a complete list. Yes, some of it states to be overages but there are also injectable bottles vet use only, possession of foreign substance, syringes with injectable drugs, possession of unlabeled tabs and the list goes on and on.

    To say none of those listed medications are possibly being used or maybe others in my opinion is naive. I know it is not everyone doing this but it appears to be more then one would hope. If anyone has documentation to the contrary I would be happy to see it.

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