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Breaking Video Exposé: Horses Doped With Meth and Cocaine, Electroshocked at Unsanctioned Races

For Rapid Launch:
August 5, 2022

David Perle 202-483-7382

Milner, Ga. – A brand new 10-month PETA undercover investigation into underground Quarter Horse racing exposes widespread doping, the usage of electrical shock gadgets, deadly horse breakdowns, jockey accidents and loss of life, and a whole bunch of hundreds of {dollars} in unlawful playing at Rancho El Centenario, the most important black market observe, or “bush observe,” in Georgia. PETA has now filed complaints with federal, state, and native authorities calling for felony investigations into these and different acts that seem to violate quite a few legal guidelines, together with Georgia’s Humane Look after Equines Act. PETA’s video footage is out there right here, and pictures are out there right here.

From June 2021 by way of the top of spring 2022, PETA investigators documented that a whole bunch of “match races”—wherein two to 6 horses are pressured to race 5 to 400 yards at breakneck speeds—had been held at Rancho El Centenario in Milner in addition to at Rancho El Canelo in Dalton and uncovered the next:

  • With no oversight from a state racing fee, horse doping runs rampant. PETA’s investigators collected dozens of discarded syringes and/or needles used to inject horses shortly earlier than races, and testing revealed that the syringes contained cocaine, methamphetamine, methylphenidate (Ritalin), and caffeine.
  • Jockeys whipped horses relentlessly—typically 20 instances in a row—and used electrical shock gadgets (aka “buzzers” or chicharras), which might lead to multiyear suspensions on mainstream tracks.
  • No veterinarians or ambulances had been standing by. Quite a few horses died, together with each horses in a single March 2022 race. One broke down catastrophically; staggered on a badly damaged, dangling leg; and was shot within the head after which dragged down the observe by a tractor. The “profitable” horse—simply 5 years outdated—died of a coronary heart assault. Jockeys additionally incurred extreme accidents, and notorious jockey Roman Chapa died from accidents sustained from racing on the observe.
  • Jockeys and house owners typically make more cash in these black market races than they’ll at mainstream Quarter Horse tracks. Wads of money modified palms in particular person, and the races had been livestreamed on Fb for distant wagers.

“These unregulated races are a free-for-all of drugging, whipping, electroshocking, and playing—with horses doped with cocaine and meth and shot useless proper on the observe,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is looking for a direct felony investigation into this seedy underworld and for the closure of this observe and others prefer it.”

Unsanctioned racetracks just like Rancho El Centenario are identified to function in no less than 28 different states.

PETA is sharing its findings with regulated tracks and state racing commissions and urging them to ban anybody who has been documented doping and/or electroshocking horses at underground races. This contains Everardo Rodriguez, the U.S. Quarter Horse jockey with essentially the most wins in 2021, who additionally races at Rancho El Centenario and different bush tracks and has been photographed carrying shock gadgets and posing with a group member holding a syringe.

Broadcast-quality footage is on the market for obtain right here.

PETA—whose motto reads, partially, that “animals are usually not ours to make use of for leisure”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For extra data on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please go to PETA.org or comply with the group on Twitter, Fb, or Instagram.



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