According to punters.com.au, racing’s first lady tore shreds off anti-racing crusaders when she addressed the attendees at a recent ladies lunch in Sydney. The Hall of Fame trainer insisted those who oppose the racing of horses don’t understand the level of love and care that goes into training them.
“People have become so weak and prissy now days, instead of being strong and loving the industry that we love,” Slaughterhouse said.
Oh bless. She clearly must be referring to that single moment when one of her horses wins a race and is then lovingly adorned by her and her fellow trainers and punters at the track. You know the one. The fist pumps, the hugs, the floral wreath, the tears. Some real flash-in-the-pan moments of love and care right there.
Slaughterhouse went on the entertain the ladies with her rhetoric stating:
“So I can’t stand when I hear that crap about horses being killed and all that.
“It gets my blood boiling.
“Because it’s just not what happens.”
Is Gai really pretending to be unaware of all of the horses, including some of her own, that are pushed and trained so hard that they break down even before they run a single race? All the racehorses that end up at the knackery? The ones that are shot and buried in pits at the back of paddocks? The ones that suffer heart-attacks? Internal bleeding? Skeletal breakages? Bleeding lungs? The ones that are documented as injured and killed from racing injuries by the hundreds each year? Who loves them Gai? Do you have any room in your heart for them?
Okay – to be fair, she did go on to acknowledge there are injuries on the track.
“Accidents happen in any sport, injuries to your legs if you are a footballer or if you are a racing car driver, it happens and that’s life.”
We’re not sure when in history a dead footballer was being carted off the track every 2.5 days.
But wait a second. Wasn’t is Gai who, only a few years ago, described 2-year-old horses as: “Here today, gone tomorrow!”? A sprinkle of honesty that is rare among her kind. It is widely accepted that horses are not skeletally mature until the age of five. Many equine disciplines won’t even allow horses to compete before age four. Yet, in racing, horses can be forced to compete at two years of age. And that is by the racing calendar. Sometimes they are actually still only yearlings. Why? The simple answer is, the quicker they race; the quicker the owners can seek to get a return on their investment.
There are two studies often referred to by racing industry proponents, that claim that horses who race as 2-year-olds have greater longevity in horse racing. But these studies are skewed. Why? Because all the horses who don’t make it to the racetrack don’t make it into the calculation of that statistic. This is yet another example of how the racing industry skews the facts to justify their existence.
To Gai and all the other trainers out there – the only reason your industry ever had a social license to operate was because the wastage and cruelty that underpins your industry was masked behind a veil of secrecy for decades. Well, the times have changed. Your secret is out. People are awake to what really goes on. Knowingly speaking fables at a ladies racing lunch, telling them exactly what they want to hear so you can all ease your own conscience may help you continue with business as usual, but no one is really buying it any more. Not even your own industry authorities are denying these hard truths and that really does make your blood boil!
The simple fact remains that if you really cared about horses, you wouldn’t be racing them. End of story.
Gai’s ridiculous ramble can be viewed here.