Another Horse Dies From Racing Injury at Los Alamitos

December 7, 2020 Updated: December 7, 2020

CYPRESS, Calif. (CNS)—Racing N Lace, a 2-year-old filly, was euthanized after suffering a racing injury at Los Alamitos Race Course, an official said Dec. 6.

Racing N Lace seemed to bump into another horse in the seventh race on Dec. 5 and threw jockey Jonathan Roman before she was vanned off. She was later officially disqualified.

She is at least the 28th horse to die from a racing or training injury at the Cypress track this year.

Los Alamitos officials did not respond to a request for further information about the nature of her injury. Mike Marten, spokesman for the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB), confirmed her euthanization to City News Service on Dec. 6.

Racing N Lace was trained by Roberto Dominguez and owned by Kolleen Ledgerwood, and had one first-place finish in five career starts.

Earlier on Dec. 5, Princess Noor was also vanned off after being pulled up by jockey Victor Espinoza in the fifth race. That horse, a 2-year-old thoroughbred filly trained by Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, was leading the Grade I, $300,000 Starlet at the time.

“[Espinoza] said he pulled her up right away,” Baffert told Los Alamitos’ website.

“He said it didn’t look real bad. It was her left front. We’re going to take her back to the barn and have her X-rayed to see what the deal is. I can’t believe it. She was running so easy.”

About 30 minutes after the race, Baffert told the Daily Racing Form that X-rays revealed there were no fractures.

“It’s soft tissue,” he said. “I don’t know if she hit herself. She’ll be fine. She didn’t break anything.”

The race was won by Varda, a 17-to-1 long shot also trained by Baffert.

Princess Noor’s owner announced Dec. 6 that she will be retired from racing.

“Princess Noor has been retired from racing after a soft tissue injury in the Starlet,” Zedan Racing Stables Inc. said via Twitter. “She’s a [star]—she had the race & probably more G1s to her name. Our focus is to get her healthy to be the best mom she can be. It hurts, but [pray to] God she’s well & retirement is the best decision.”

The Orange County track is currently holding its L.A. County Fair Meet for daytime thoroughbred racing through Dec. 20, along with nighttime quarter horse races. All races are being held without spectators present due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A cluster of equine deaths led the CHRB to place Los Alamitos on probation earlier this year.

On July 20, the CHRB unanimously signed off on a plan to allow Los Alamitos to continue holding races after track officials agreed to add several layers of oversight.

The CHRB will meet by teleconference on Dec. 17 to consider whether to grant Los Alamitos a license to conduct quarter horse racing in the 2020–2021 season.