The practice just about everywhere is that horses are purchased right before a claiming race, and immediately become the property of their new owner—even if the horse breaks down and dies. This has been causing problems, especially at Aqueduct Racetrack, where the Winter Meet death toll is nearing 20.
Since the start of the winter meet at Aqueduct, 16 horses have broken down, all on the weatherproofed inner track. Suddenly, being a stunthorse on Luck doesn't seem like such a bad idea. New York's governor has asked the NY Racing Association to commission an independent investigation. [Daily Racing Form]