HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) — In light of Churchill Downs announcing they’re moving their spring-summer racing meet to Ellis Park in Henderson, Kentucky, PETA Senior Vice President says this “unprecedented” move could still cost more horses’ lives.
Churchill Downs made the decision after 12 horses died at their racetrack during recent training and races.
“We are relieved that racing has been suspended, which PETA has been calling for since May 2, but Churchill Downs must not play Russian roulette with these horses’ lives by simply shifting the problem elsewhere,” explains PETA Senior VP Kathy Guillermo in a statement released to media. “Putting the bullet in a different chamber could have the same lethal outcome.”
She says PETA is frustrated at the racing industry’s “refusal” to implement technology that has before proven to save lives.
“Until race tracks install synthetic surfaces and utilize CT scanning equipment to detect injuries, among other improvements, they can’t pretend to be mystified by fatalities,” she states.
Churchill Downs Incorporated CEO Bill Carstanjen says he is proud of how their organization handles safety and points out that they are making the move to Ellis Park based out of an abundance of caution for safety.
“The team at Churchill Downs takes great pride in our commitment to safety and strives to set the highest standard in racing, consistently going above and beyond the regulations and policies that are required,” said Carstanjen.
Track officials tell us they will continue to thoroughly investigate safety measures while horses race in Henderson.