Hawthorne Backstretch Update, Tuesday, October 30 – 1:00 PM
our meeting with the horsemen last Friday, several stated different concerns of
taking all precautions necessary regarding limiting any spread of equine herpes
through the Hawthorne backstretch.
point of concern was in regards to limiting horse to horse contact via the
stable/lead ponies during both mornings and on racing afternoons. While not a single stable/lead pony has shown
any signs/symptoms of fevers, or anything in regards to the recent equine
herpes outbreak, we have to take all the necessary precautions.
Under the directive of the State
veterinarian with concurrence of the Association veterinarian, we are not
allowing the use of any stable/lead ponies in the morning during training hours, or in the afternoon during races until further notice.
tests are being taken on all independently owned ponies that are used either in
the morning during training, or in the afternoon during races. Upon the results of those tests, we will
determine a timeframe for when ponies can return to work. Again, this is being done as a precaution; no
stable/lead ponies have shown any symptoms during this entire time period.
not discriminate, this is in effect for ALL
PONIES on the Hawthorne backstretch.
While horsemen may have their own healthy stable pony, again we are not
allowing those ponies on the track during this time period either so we may
further eliminate any horse to horse contact.
the outrider’s horses have been tested. The outriders are necessary to provide
safety during the afternoon and they will be on horses which have tested
negative for equine herpes. In every
effort to provide safety on the track during races, we will have four outriders
working each afternoon until the restrictions are lifted on the stable
ponies. The outriders will have properly
disinfected equipment between each race and will be able to assist a horse if
necessary during a post parade, race or leading to the gate.
this will be a great hardship on our independent pony people but this is also
currently required to continue racing.
As test results are returned on these ponies and at the time when
allowed by the veterinarians, those horsemen and horses will allowed to begin
further information becomes available, we will keep you updated.
Jim Miller –
Assistant General Manager, Hawthorne Race Course