From the most recent Los Alamitos Stewards Minutes:
“UNTIMELY PASSING [Friday, June 24] The mood around this venue was rather somber over the course of the last few days as news of the death of the champion Quarter Horse Moonist came to light. The horse contracted colic on Tuesday, was rushed to a local veterinary clinic, but could not be saved.”
Allow me to explain that “somber mood” pervading the “venue.” The 5-year-old Moonist was a multiple graded-stakes winner; he had 24 first-place finishes in 34 “career” starts, including 7 of his last 8 – the most recent coming just nine days before “contracting colic.” Ranked 1st in wins in 2015, 20th in earnings. All told, almost a million dollars over his three-year run. And that is why the Racing people are sad – and why the stewards went out of their way to note it (in fact, in three years of reviewing their minutes, I’ve never seen a write-up like this).
By the way, while Moonist will not show up on our KIA, 2016 list (reserved for racing/training deaths only), we maintain – unequivocally – that he is no less a casualty of this vile business than a horse who snaps his leg off heading for the wire. Truth is, “colic” is but another industry ruse. Racing killed this young horse.