11/23/2010 1:56PM

Englehart's farm and barns at Belmont and Finger Lakes quarantined


Trainer Chris Englehart’s farm in upstate New York as well as his barns at Belmont Park and Finger Lakes have been placed under quarantine after a horse of his died due to a confirmed case of equine herpesvirus.

She’s Smokin Hot, a 4-year-old daughter of Smokin Mel, was euthanized at Cornell University last Friday after tests revealed she had equine herpesvirus, a contagious viral disease that leads to respiratory disease and sometimes neurological disease.

She’s Smokin Hot, who had not raced since Aug. 20 at Finger Lakes, had spent the majority of her time at Englehart’s farm in Shortsville, N.Y., a few miles from Finger Lakes, according to Englehart. However, She’s Smoking Hot was at Finger Lakes on Nov. 8 where she breezed four furlongs in 48 seconds out of the starting gate before returning to the farm. It wasn’t until Nov. 17 that She’s Smokin Hot showed clinical signs of the disease.

She’s Smokin Hot has not been stabled recently at Belmont Park, though she did make her first start there in July 2009 when trained by Chip Dutrow. She’s Smokin Hot, who won 3 of 10 starts, was owned by Wachtel Stable.

Englehart’s farm and his barn at Finger Lakes were placed under quarantine by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets. Englehart’s barn at Belmont, which also houses 22 horses trained by David Donk, was placed under quarantine by NYRA chief examining veterinarian Dr. Anthony Verderosa as a precaution.

Late Tuesday afternoon, a horse stabled at Englehart’s Finger Lakes barn did test positive - via a nasal swab - for the Equine Herpesvirus. Upon learning of this, the New York Racing Association put a ban on horses shipping in to its tracks from Finger Lakes for the foreseeable future, according to Bruce Johnstone, manager of racing operations for the NYRA.

As a result of the quarantine, Englehart will not be permitted to run or ship horses until Dec. 9 meaning he will miss the remainder of the Finger Lakes meet which ends on Dec. 4. Englehart is the leading trainer at Finger Lakes with 131 wins from 403 starters and purse earnings of $1.2 million.

Also, Donk is not permitted to start or ship horses until Dec. 9 because he shares a barn with Englehart, who has 9 horses stabled in barn 49 at Belmont. Since Sunday, Donk and Englehart have been permitted to train their horses on Belmont’s training track from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., or after regular training hours are complete. According to Englehart, he has not been able to train his horses at Finger Lakes though he said officials at that track are attempting to work out a schedule with him.

Englehart said once the quarantine is lifted, he plans to have 25 horses stabled at Belmont to race at Aqueduct during the winter.