11/23/2012 7:40PM

Hawthorne: First group of horses permitted to leave after herpesvirus outbreak

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A group of horses was allowed to leave the Hawthorne Race Course backstretch Saturday, the first time horses have been permitted to depart Hawthorne since the Illinois Department of Agriculture quarantined the track Oct. 26 after an outbreak of equine herpesvirus.

The horses, trained by Gary Scherer, were bound for a private facility in Kentucky, according to an Internet posting by the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association.

The herpesvirus (EHV-1) outbreak, which has claimed the lives of three horses at Hawthorne, began Oct. 14. When the virus spread from the site of the initial infections to another Hawthorne barn on Oct. 26, the state Department of Agriculture quarantined the track.
On a conference call Monday, Dr. Mark Ernst, chief veterinarian for the Illinois Department of Agriculture, said it might be possible for horses that have produced a negative test for the EHV-1 virus to leave the grounds for an approved receiving facility.

The ITHA followed up on that suggestion, and protocols for departure were established earlier this week. To leave Hawthorne, a horseman must obtain permission from the receiving state’s Department of Agriculture and present that permission to the Illinois Department of Agriculture. A veterinarian from the U.S. Department of Agriculture must be present at Hawthorne upon the horses’ departure and at their destination.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey Ann.......the article says they are allowed to leave on Saturday, doesn't say they had left yet as it was written on Friday. Thus article is correct. Dont be one of those few on here that are always negatively picking on every ittle shred you can find. The editors for the form do an outstanding job reporting both the many pros and cons of this great game. That being said I do see how you could have been somewhat confused by the first sentence of the article and looking at date posted
Amy Hurley More than 1 year ago
Okay, DRF editors, this is the 2nd article that references action occuring on "Saturday," when obviously refering to events of Fri. If you are so astute as to be able to predict the future, please let all in on your secrets, so we can cash our bets by knowing the outcome before the races are run!