VanMeter, Owner, Trainer, Vet and Breeder Goes All In on the “N” Word

July 6, 2020

A hoard of angry people have been buzzing all day on social media over comments made by someone within the horse racing industry. Tom VanMeter who is widely known for foaling and raising Triple Crown champion American Pharoah as well as being a prominent thoroughbred consigner, pushed his chips all in on a few racist comments on Facebook recently.

Tom VanMeter who owns and operates VanMeter sales based in Lexington, Kentucky had responded to a Facebook post by a Donnie Snellings asking people to boycott the NFL and re share his post. VanMeter responded to the post by simulating a new name for the acronym N.F.L. by replacing the “N” with an abbreviation of a racist term that begins with “N” followed by- “Football League.”

VanMeter Doubles Down On Racist Post with an Additional Comment

VanMeter later doubled down on his initial racist comment by stating “put em back in their cage!!!” Several within the industry have been quick to join in the denouncing of Mr. VanMeter’s statements;

“OwnerView, jointly owned by The Jockey Club and TOBA, has suspended the account privileges of Tom VanMeter pending further review, based upon offensive content posted on social media under the same name. There is no place in racing or our society for racially hateful language.”

Keeneland also condemned VanMeter’s racist posts by stating; “We condemn Tom VanMeter’s post as there is no room for that in our sport or society, at Keeneland, we have begun the process of reviewing our internal culture, structures and practices to try and build a better, more diverse and equitable Keeneland family. We do not believe there are easy answers to these complex and systemic challenges and everything is on the table as we move forward.”

Several others have weighed in with comments like Fasig-Tipton along with fans and industry workers condemning VanMeter and his bigotry. Many are calling for a boycott from purchasing any of his horses as sales by stating “if you purchase from VanMeter you’re part of the problem.”

Donnie Snellings is employed by Denali Stud, and his employer spoke out about the racist post by stating “they do not condone, nor do those comments reflect our core values.”

One would think that in the current climate of the world much less the fact that this is 2020 you shouldn’t hear or see comments like that. One has to assume that he’s either just that ignorant to the speed and power of social media or he just didn’t care and felt somewhat secure in saying it.

One person on Facebook wrote: “This needed to happen within our industry. Hate filled racist language is never acceptable. Heads up to those who do. Be prepared to be ostracized. Thank goodness I was not friends with this dreadful person”.

Ironically, and also on Facebook, VanMeter had this to say in a recent post:

Love Ray’s version! In typical Ray fashion he starts the song in verse 3…… enjoy….. God did bless America!” referring to Ray Charles’ version of “God Bless America”. I’m confused, but racism rarely makes sense.

We at Past The Wire also condemn Tom VanMeter’s post and feel there should be zero tolerance in the world for this type of disgusting behavior.

That was a phenomenal article Jonathan. Thank you for writing it and sharing it. Ruffian was my second love (after Man O' War) and I simply cannot stop the tears from falling every time I read about this magnificent black beauty.

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