Kentucky horse racing commissioners are expected to listen Jan. 15, to a staff report on an investigation of trainer Steve Asmussen that followed allegations of horse mistreatment from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).
The allegations from PETA followed its 2014 release of a video the group says documents wrongdoing at the Eclipse Award-winning trainer’s barn at Churchill Downs, in Louisville, Kentucky, in 2013.
Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) spokesman Dick Brown said Susan Speckert, KHRC legal counsel, will present the report to commissioners during its regular monthly meeting at 1:30 p.m. on Jan. 15, in the Kentucky Room at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky. As typical of an investigation of a licensee, the commissioners will consider the report during executive session.
Last year racing regulators in New York and Kentucky launched investigations related to the PETA video that PETA says was collected by one of its members while she worked in 2013 for Asmussen. Involved parties say videos were shot at both Churchill Downs and Saratoga Race Course, in Saratoga Springs, New York, over a period of at least four months.
In Kentucky, PETA alleged a non-veterinarian employed by Asmussen administered a drug to one of his horses and that Asmussen’s assistant trainer Scott Blasi maintained horses "who were apparently in poor physical condition, in apparent violation of Kentucky’s Thoroughbred racing regulations." After the investigation began last year, KHRC executive director John Ward