JC / Railbird

Randy Hartley

Hit the Owners

Commented John S. on an earlier post:

I’ve said this about enforcement in the game over and over again: If you want to clean up racing, hit the owners…. If you made their horses come off the track, no owner in their right mind would send a string to known cheaters.

Which I was thinking of as I read that Randy Hartley, part-owner of Gato Go Win, isn’t upset with trainer Jeff Mullins over getting the horse scratched from the Bay Shore last Saturday after he was observed dosing him with a substance in the Aqueduct detention barn:

“I’m not mad,” Hartley said. “[Mullins] was trying to do what he thought was the right thing by the horse. I don’t know what they’re going to do as far as fining him or whatever, but we’ll find another race for the horse. He’s a good trainer. He’s just a down-to-earth guy who made a mistake. We all make mistakes.”

As long as owners like Hartley are willing to dismiss rule-flouting as a mistake, the ethically challenged will always have horses in their barns.