11/30/2012 12:18PM

Tampa Bay Downs bans horses from Hawthorne Race Course


Horses that have raced, trained, or been stabled at Hawthorne Race Course during its fall meeting will not be allowed to enter the Tampa Day Downs backstretch, the track said in a Friday press realease.

An outbreak of equine herpesvirus has claimed the lives of four horses during the Hawthorne meet, which began Oct. 5 and runs through Dec. 30. Hawthorne horses have been under a state-imposed quarantine.

“We are sympathetic to the plight of Hawthorne horsemen and their animals impacted by the equine herpes virus,” said Tampa Bay Downs vice president Peter Berube. “However, for the time being, our priorities include the welfare of our locally based population.”

All horses entering the Tampa Bay Downs stable area must have a certificate of veterinary inspection dated within 72 hours of arrival, with a rectal temperature and acknowledgement that each horse has been vaccinated against the equine herpesvirus between 14 and 120 days of arrival, plus a statement signed and dated by the licensed attending veterinarian.