An investigation by Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital's Dr. Larry Bramlage into the circumstances of Breeders' Cup Classic contender Mongolian Groom's fatal injury is well underway. The Breeders' Cup board contracted Bramlage to review not only the pre-race condition and injury of Mongolian Groom, but the organization's pre-race safety protocols as a whole.
A source close to the investigation indicated there was no timeline for its completion, in an effort to provide Bramlage as much time as needed to thoroughly examine all records available to him and conduct in-person interviews. The Breeders' Cup board has also hired legal counsel to help Bramlage acquire access to whatever information he requests. Those records could include notes made by regulatory veterinarians in the Jockey Club's InCompass System, the horse's records from his treating veterinarian, and details about the Breeders' Cup veterinary team's examinations of the horse.
All horses starting in the Breeders' Cup received multiple pre-race exams from multiple veterinarians, though it is not yet clear when Mongolian Groom's exams took place, how many there were, and which veterinarians conducted them.
Sources say Breeders' Cup legal counsel has also sent letters to media outlets on site at Santa Anita, asking them to preserve any video taken of the horse at work before the race, as it's expected Bramlage will review all of that material.
Upon completion of the investigation, Bramlage will present a report to the Breeders' Cup board, which will subsequently make his findings public. It's not yet known exactly what details will be included in the public report.
Since the horse's death at Santa Anita, questions have been raised about the horse's condition during the week prior to the race, based primarily on a series of videos from various sources depicting the horse at a trot. The horse's trainer and treating veterinarian maintain he was sound and in suitable condition to run.
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