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Horse Racing Will Continue At Los Alamitos — With Increased Scrutiny

A race horse attends morning workout at Santa Anita Park on June 15, 2019. Santa Anita closed last year because of horse deaths. Los Alamitos faces similar scrutiny. (David McNew/Getty Images)
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The California Horse Racing Board has approved a plan that will allow races to continue at Los Alamitos track. The Orange County facility had been placed on probation and was at risk of losing its license after 29 horses died there this year — 19 while racing or training and 10 from illness.

The new plan includes:

  • An additional veterinarian to monitor horses during training and on exiting and entering the track
  • A "security steward" to oversee veterinary and barn practices
  • A panel to review race entries; the panel can reject an entry for any reason related to horse or rider safety
  • A fatality review whenever a horse dies, regardless of the cause of death
The board voted unanimously (6-0) today to approve the track's plan. They issued a brief statement following the vote:
After the Los Alamitos Racing Association presented a plan to the California Horse Racing Board that includes additional safety personnel and greater scrutiny of horses in training and entered to race, the Board accepted the plan and took no action against the racetrack’s license, while indicating intent to monitor the plan for effectiveness and compliance.

The sport has come under increased scrutiny as public awareness of the frequency of horse injuries and deaths has grown. Santa Anita Park closed early last year over similar concerns, and a report in March found many of the horses had
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pre-existing injuries related to high-intensity training.



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