This was in yesterday's Times Union. I didn't read it on the web, but a paper copy was in the waiting area while I was getting my haircut.
From the story: "Gallo said he could recall only one death of a horse in the event's prior 31 years. "I can't emphasize enough how rare this is," Gallo said in a phone interview." Also "Last year, there were 0.93 breakdowns per thousand starts at Saratoga,"
NYRA officials said. "The industry average was two. Saratoga is
perennially well under the industry average in this category."
How about a little context for those abstract statistics on "breakdowns?" (What a pathetic euphemism!) Check out this disturbing story from the New York Times if you dare:
"On average, 24 horses die each week at racetracks across America. Many are inexpensive horses racing with little regulatory protection in pursuit of bigger and bigger prizes. These deaths often go unexamined, the bodies shipped to rendering plants and landfills rather than to pathologists who might have discovered why the horses broke down."
The Capital District will now succumb to its five-week hysteria over the Saratoga season. I say, Screw you to all the participants, owners, trainers, riders, officials and patrons alike, all the pretentious hat-wearers who purport that this cruelty is glamorous.