Santa Anita Park Sees 36th Horse Death Since Late-December

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Santa Anita, struggling to regain public confidence with safe racing during its fall meeting, had a sixth horse fatality at the track since Sept. 18 when Bye Bye Beautiful, a 2-year-old filly, broke down on the backstretch Sunday and was euthanized.

Bye Bye Beautiful was running in a six-furlong maiden special weight race when she suddenly seemed in distress because of an injury to her front legs and jockey Tiago Piereira pulled her up. It is the second fatality in three days and third since Oct. 19.

It was the filly’s second race, having finished fourth in her debut at Los Alamitos on Sept. 13. She worked four times since that race. Bye Bye Beautiful was a $210,000 purchase at last year’s Keeneland September yearling sale. She was trained by Eric Kruljac.

It was the 36th fatality since Dec. 30 at Santa Anita. In the spring, the track instituted major safety reforms mostly tied to medication and veterinary oversight. However, despite the additional scrutiny, there have been six fatalities, three racing and three training, compared to four in last year’s fall meeting, which had bigger fields and more races. This meeting has one week remaining.

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