The Sober Reality


For those of us who love, care for, or are obsessed by horses, nothing is more painful than the passing of one of these majestic and proud creatures. However, as humans engage animals in sport, it is inevitable that there will be injuries, and worse, casualties. This is the sober reality of horseracing.

In Tuesday’s novato run at San Lazaro Leisure Park, Cookie Royal (stablemate of the famed “iron horse” Ocean Cookie) stumbled and broke a leg just before reaching the wire.

According to the Stewards’s Report, “75 meters before the finish line, Cookie Royal under RM Telles tripped and unseated its jockey. Vet examined the horse and found it to have suffered complete compound fracture of the tibia of the near hind limb and was ordered destroyed. Telles was examined at the clinic and was declared fit to ride.”

I have seen quite a few instances of this happening, not just during actual races but, more often, during workouts. Younger horses (two to three years old) seem more susceptible to the risks of injury or fractures.

As manager of the famed Esguerra Racing Stable for a few months in 2005, I remember a pretty filly named Sweet Sutter coming home after her first regular race with a limb badly damaged. We sent her back to the ranch, her racing career over before it had barely begun. She was lucky; she could still become a broodmare.

Cookie Royal was only three. Farewell to this beautiful thoroughbred filly.

Photo: Cookie Royal falls. 22 May 2007, SLLP.

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