With two of trainer's horses dead already, Churchill Downs must scratch Lord Miles from Kentucky Derby

The Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs

Four deaths at the track mark a grim Derby week for Churchill Downs.

Saffie Joseph Jr. Should Not Be Allowed to Run Horses, Given Tragic Deaths This Week

Two horses trained by Joseph Jr. have dropped dead without explanation at Churchill Downs. In any fair assessment, he’s lost the privilege of competing in this year’s Kentucky Derby.”
— Wayne Pacelle, Animal Wellness Actione
LOUISVILLE, KY, UNITED STATES, May 4, 2023 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Animal Wellness Action today urged the management at Churchill Downs to deny a racing slot to Saffie Joseph Jr. because two of his horses — Parents Pride and Chasing Artie — died for unexplained reasons this week in the run-up to the Kentucky Derby.

“It would be reckless and wrong-headed to allow Saffie Joseph Jr. to put one more horse into competition at Churchill Downs,” said Wayne Pacelle, president of Animal Wellness Action. “Two horses he trained have dropped dead without explanation at Churchill Downs, and, in any fair assessment of his performance, he’s lost the privilege of running a horse in this year’s Derby.”

Lord Miles, trained by Joseph Jr., is slated to run in the 149th Kentucky Derby on May 6.

Churchill Downs called the series of four total deaths of horses this week “completely unacceptable” and declared “these troubling incidents are alarming and must be addressed.”

“If their words have practical applications, then Churchill Down must protect Lord Miles and keep him out of the starting gate and out of competition,” added Pacelle.

“As a native Louisvillian, I get the passion people here and across the country feel about this iconic race,” said Joseph Grove, director of public relations for Animal Wellness Action and host of the Animal Wellness podcast. “But the care of the horses must be our first priority, and this cluster of horse deaths is startling. Lamentations are not enough.”

The four deaths at Churchill Downs add to the total of 7,200 horses nationwide who have died from race injuries between 2009-2021, according to a database kept by the Jockey Club.

Last week, the FTC extended the deadline for race-day anti-doping standards to go into effect for Thoroughbred racing. In announcing the alarming move, the agency admitted to moving the deadline to prevent it from taking effect before the Triple Crown begins. Congress passed the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act in December 2020, and Congress amended the law to safeguard its provisions from a constitutional challenge in December 2022.

Animal Wellness Action is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(4) organization with a mission of helping animals by promoting legal standards forbidding cruelty and to encourage enforcement of our laws. We believe helping animals helps us all.

The Center for a Humane Economy is a non-profit organization that focuses on influencing businesses to pay attention to animal cruelty in their operations and to eliminate harmful practices. We believe helping animals helps us all.

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