Racing to the Slot Machine: Yay or 'Neigh?'

Who is getting excited for the Kentucky Derby?!
Do you have a ticket?  Or perhaps a Derby party in the works?
Once again I will be out in Lexington in early May to revel in the festivities.
Who are you placing your bets on?

I had a reader once remind me of the quote:
You know horses are smarter than people.  You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people.  ~Will Rogers
Would Keeneland be marred or enhanced by the addition of a casino?
(Photo is my own)

There is currently a lot of controversy over racing and gambling - Kentucky doesn't permit casinos at their tracks (defined generally by slot machines and roulette tables).  This accounts for an enormous loss in potential revenue.  In other states, such as Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Indiana, gambling is permitted at the tracks.  And in England you can bet online for races (like the upcoming Cheltenham Festival or the Gold Cup, if you wish to do so).

Horse racing mingles with casinos at operations dubbed "racinos"

The advocates of on-site slots at the Kentucky tracks claim that the revenue would contribute to higher purses, and higher purses draw the better horses, and better horses makes for better races, and better races bring more people in- to therefore complete the circle of more people funding higher purses.

Dissenters claim that on-site slot machines are just a short-term solution that won't offer long-term positive consequences; others claim that casinos on-site will besmirch the reputation of racing; many just find casinos to be contrary to the public interest.

I have placed bids at the racetracks before (based solely on horse conformation and not on calculations of the odds or bloodlines), but have never gambled online.
In general, I tend to oppose the addition of more casinos in my hometown, but I can certainly see how "racinos" would provide valuable funding to Kentucky tracks.

How would you vote, whether you gamble or not, in favor of racinos or against?

Quote provided by USA Today

A Mystery Lameness for a very clear Reason: Cookies!

Hello!  I hope you've all had fantastic half-month of February so far.  The weather has been outstanding in California, and I have been trail riding as much as possible.   Our weather has been in rather stark contrast to the Nemo survivors on the east coast!

I find that the more I am engaged and immersed in horses, the more equine legal topics I find to blog about! I have started riding a little mare more often, and thought I would introduce to you my latest equine muse, Tobiana (I know, not a very original name; Tobiana is Spanish for a tobiano (paint) colored horse).



"She now gets a thickly-bedded stall at night and lots of cookies- I think she is pleased with her choice"

She is a retired polo pony, though only retired because she has a mystery lameness whenever she plays field polo.  We can't find any concrete physical reason why she goes lame, but she is perfectly sound as a hack horse, so voila! she has a new job.

Her mystery lameness made me think of lawsuits over lame horses.
Typically these lawsuits are by the buyers against the sellers and/or vet, alleging fraud and collusion in the sale.  One lawsuit I worked on was for a horse that the buyer claimed could no longer perform at the level it was alleged to be able to perform at the time of sale.  This would be a breach of implied or express warranty, plus, the buyer claims the vet and the sellers conspired to hide the horse's lameness issues.

So what about this little mare Tobiana and her mystery lameness?  She has been in our family for a longtime, has been an excellent mare, and will forever be our pet.  However, if I had purchased her with the expressed intent to play field polo with her, whether I would have a valid case or not would depend in part on: what the seller warranted the mare could do, the cause and timing of the lameness (whether the seller had knowledge of the mare's mystery lameness when she played field polo), and of course expert testimony regarding the existence of the mare's lameness.

I'm just glad that Tobiana is happy in her new job- after the relatively non-cushy life of polo pony, she now gets a thickly-bedded stall at night and lots of cookies- I think she is pleased with her choice.  Plan on seeing a lot more of her on the blog!

Have you ever had a horse that had a mystery lameness?  Perhaps he or she lightly brushes a jump pole, then feigns lameness?  Such funny, and clever, creatures!