DEAR NATIONAL THOROUGHBRED RACING ASSOCIATION,
As the presumed national body of Thoroughbred horse racing, we ask that you conduct a thorough audit of:
- the incentives and policies that led to the death of champion racehorse Monzante on the racetrack;
- the role and responsibility or lack thereof of his breeder, Juddmonte Farms; his owners during his championship years, Jay and Gretchen Manoogian and Scott Anastasi; his trainer during his championship years, Mike Mitchell; his owner-trainer at the time of his death, Jackie W. Thacker; and
- what incentives and policies the National Thoroughbred Racing Association intends to pursue to make sure another tragedy like this does not happen again.
Monzante began his racing career in Europe in 2006.
In fall 2007, he started his American racing career for award-winning trainer Mike Mitchell and owners Scott Anastasi and Jay and Gretchen Manoogian.
In 2008, he earned $391,550 his owners and trainer from seven races. In 2009, he was at the peak of his game and competed in the richest day of horse racing, the Breeders' Cup.
But from there it went downhill. Monzante ran a disappointing sixth at the Breeders' Cup. It was seventh in his next race. As they say in horse racing, he started dropping in "class," racing in less expensive and prestigious races against less talented horses.
Fast forward to today.
On July 20, 2013, Monzante -- now nine, old for a racehorse -- raced for the first time in more than seven months -- a notable layoff period -- for his owner/trainer Jackie W. Thacker.
The official racing chart says he "stopped." Then he was euthanized on the track.
Put another way: A horse who won more than $390,000 for his initial American owners and more than $580,000 in his lifetime was left to die on the racetrack.
National Thoroughbred Racing Association, what will YOU do about this?
Horse racing fans everywhere
It's time to change the culture of horse racing with a full accounting of how the industry failed this horse and how we can keep it from failing in the future.
You say you want to hear from the fans. Here we are. This is a genuine, grassroots effort of concerned horse racing fans across the country.