lilac fire

One Year Later: Innumerable Heroes Among ‘Resilient’ San Luis Rey Survivors

One year after a wildfire tragically killed 46 horses at San Luis Rey Downs, those who endured the flames will gather at a nearby restaurant to remember. Horsemen from every walk of life came together that day, working endlessly to try to save their four-legged friends. Several, like Martine Bellocq and Joe Herrick, still bear […]

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Lilac Fire Hero Bellocq ‘Still In The Game,’ Oversaw Pair Of Runners Friday At Del Mar

Eleven months after she was severely burned attempting to save horses from the fire that devastated San Luis Rey Downs, trainer Martine Bellocq was in the Del Mar paddock Friday overseeing the saddling of two of her horses in the eight-race program. In a wheelchair that was navigated by her son-in-law Colin Hinck and with […]

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Race Track Chaplaincy Honors Lilac Fire Heroes With White Horse Award

A hero is a person who is admired for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. There are heroes all around the horse racing industry and the Race Track Chaplaincy of America (RTCA) recognizes some of these selfless servants through its White Horse Awards. Established in 2003, the White Horse Awards recognizes individuals within the horse […]

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Lovely Finish Takes Third In First Race Since Surviving The Lilac Fire

Lovely Finish, the filly saved from last year’s devastating Lilac fire at San Luis Rey Downs in Southern California, made an emotional return to the races Thursday for the man who saved her. “It’s definitely more than a horse race,” trainer Joe Herrick told the San Diego Union-Tribune. “It’s like being a soccer dad, times […]

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‘I Want To Send A Message’: Resilience Of Burned Trainer Martine Bellocq On Full Display

On Dec. 7, trainer Martine Bellocq braved billowing black smoke and encroaching flames in an effort to save her beloved horse, Wild Bill Hickory, at San Luis Rey Downs. In the months that followed, she has braved a whole lot more. Through burns over 60 percent of her body, a port in her chest, a […]

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‘Greyvitos – Lilac Fire Survivor’ Ready To Roll In Lexington Stakes

Triple B Farms’ Greyvitos, who will face 11 other 3-year-olds in Saturday’s $200,000 Stonestreet Lexington (G3), walked the stakes barn shedrow Thursday morning while wearing a blanket that said, “Greyvitos – Lilac Fire Survivor.” The son of Malibu Moon, trained by Adam Kitchingman, has faced his share of adversity over the past months. In December, he was evacuated from the […]

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‘It Was A Nightmare, But We’ve Come Out The Other Side’: Equine Survivors Of San Luis Rey Fire Returning To Winner’s Circle

They’ve had to overcome much more than ever expected in their lives, but several of the equine survivors of the San Luis Rey Downs fire have not only returned to racing, but have also returned to the winner’s circle. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, at least 25 horses that were stabled at San Luis Rey Downs when […]

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San Luis Rey Downs Fire Voted NTRA Moment Of The Year

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) today announced thatthe Dec. 7 tragedy of the Lilac Fire that devastated the San Luis Rey Training Center in Bonsall, Calif., near San Diego, claiming the lives of 46 Thoroughbreds, has been voted the 2017 NTRA Moment of the Year based on the results of a record 3,303 votes […]

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Churchill Downs Donates $25,000 To San Luis Rey Fire Victims

Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI or the Company) (NASDAQ: CHDN) announced today that it has made a donation of $25,000 to California Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Foundation (CTHF) to distribute to victims of the San Luis Rey Downs fire. The December fire in Bonsall, California, claimed the lives of 43 horses, resulted in the hospitalization of five trainers […]

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The Filly He Saved Helps Herrick Recover From San Luis Rey Fire

Joe Herrick suffered burns over 23 percent of his body when saving the filly Lovely Finish from the flames at San Luis Rey Downs on Dec. 7, and lost six of his seven racehorses to the fire. Herrick described the harrowing ordeal to the San Diego Union-Tribune: “This fireball just came over the wall and hit […]

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