Mongolian Groom training ahead of the Breeders' Cup Classic

Mongolian Groom training ahead of the Breeders' Cup Classic

Zoe Metz

Mongolian Groom Euthanized After BC Classic Breakdown

Son of Hightail suffered a catastrophic injury in the stretch of the race.

After breaking down in the stretch of the Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) and suffering a catastrophic injury to his left hind leg, Mongolian Groom was euthanized Nov. 2 at the equine hospital at Santa Anita Park

Breeders' Cup issued a statement noting the injury and that Mongolian Stable's Mongolian Groom, who entered off a victory in the Sept. 28 Awesome Again Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita, was evaluated by an expert team of vets after the race who determined the injuries were too severe to treat the 4-year-old Hightail  gelding.

Dr. Scott Palmer, the on-call veterinarian for the American Association of Equine Practitioners, reported Mongolian Groom suffered a "serious injury to his left-hind ankle."

"(Mongolian Groom) was loaded into an ambulance and taken to the Santa Anita equine hospital and evaluated by a team of veterinarians," Palmer said. "His injury is a serious one and at this point they are working with the connections of the horse on decisions on treatment options they may like to pursue."

Breeders' Cup issued a statement that details the post-race evaluation and decision-making.

"Mongolian Groom sustained an injury in the Breeders' Cup Classic today and was immediately attended to by an expert team of veterinarians, led by board certified veterinary surgeon Dr. Ryan Carpenter. 

"During their evaluation at the equine hospital at Santa Anita, they observed a serious fracture to his left hind limb. Radiographs were taken and a complete evaluation was performed. 

"Given the extent of the injury, Dr. Carpenter, in consultation with Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, veterinary surgeon and professor emeritus at Colorado State University; Dr. Rick Arthur, equine medical director of the California Horse Racing Board; and attending veterinarian Dr. Vince Baker, recommended humane euthanasia of Mongolian Groom."

Breeders' Cup noted that equine safety is a priority for the event and Santa Anita.

"The death of Mongolian Groom is a loss to the entire horse racing community. Our equine and human athletes' safety is the Breeders' Cup's top priority. We have worked closely with Santa Anita leading up to the World Championships to promote enhanced equine safety. Santa Anita has implemented numerous industry-leading reforms to enhance the existing health and safety measures with the intent of providing a safe racing environment. In addition, Breeders' Cup always observes the most thorough up-to-date medication practices and restrictions, testing protocols, equine security and surveillance program, veterinary exams, injury management protocols, and racing surface testing. These measures are in place to ensure our athletes are racing under the safest and most transparent conditions possible."

Breeders' Cup added the catastrophic injury will be further evaluated.

"Breeders' Cup has engaged world-renowned veterinarian, Dr. Larry Bramlage, to conduct an independent evaluation, the results of which will be published when completed. We will continue to keep all stakeholders apprised as information becomes available. We are committed to working with our partners in the industry to continue to advance safety reforms, with the well-being of our athletes in mind."