LEXINGTON, Ky. (January 15, 2020) – Dr. Lawrence (Larry) Bramlage has released an evaluation report on Mongolian Groom’s fatal injury in the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic. Immediately following the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic, the Breeders’ Cup Board of Directors retained Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital’s Dr. Larry Bramlage to conduct an evaluation of Mongolian Groom’s pre-race condition and injury, as well as all pre-race safety and evaluation protocols in place for the 2019 Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Dr. Bramlage conducted the evaluation, with support from outside counsel Stoll Keenon Ogden PLLC (SKO). The complete evaluation as delivered to the Breeders’ Cup Board of Directors is available at www.breederscup.com/mongolian-groom-evaluation.
Dr. Bramlage noted in the evaluation report that out of two hundred and twenty-nine (229) horses that raced during the 2019 World Championships, Mongolian Groom was the only horse to sustain an injury. “[I]t is hard to fault a process that had a 99.6% accuracy rate, but there were opportunities to remove Mongolian Groom from competition that were missed due to time constraints or process deficiencies that could be made more prominent.” Dr. Bramlage’s evaluation report identifies six (6) suggested process improvements aimed at refining safety and evaluation protocols for future events which he believes will yield continued progress in ensuring the safety of its participants.
Chairman of the Board of the Breeders’ Cup, Fred W. Hertrich III, stated, “The Breeders’ Cup is committed to taking all actions to ensure our equine and human athletes compete under the safest and most transparent conditions possible. The Breeders’ Cup Board of Directors appreciates Dr. Bramlage’s thorough evaluation, and will review Dr. Bramlage’s recommendations for improvements to the processes that were in place for the 2019 World Championships and discuss them in detail at the next board meeting for adoption at future events. We will also discuss these recommendations with the Thoroughbred Safety Coalition, so the recommendations will have an even broader and more beneficial impact on our sport and reducing injury to our athletes.”
Via Breeders’ Cup Press Release