Board weighs new rules after 22 horse deaths at Santa Anita

Courtesy: Santa Anita Park/YouTube/MGN Online
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LOS ANGELES (AP) - The California Horse Racing Board is weighing new safety and medication rules in the wake of 22 horse deaths at Santa Anita.

The board is meeting Thursday at the track northeast of Los Angeles to consider whether to ban medication and whips on racing days, among other changes. If approved, Santa Anita and Golden Gate Fields in Northern California would become the first racetracks in the nation to impose such restrictions.

Santa Anita agreed to make the changes after 22 horses suffered fatal injuries at the track in less than three months, angering animal rights groups and prompting protests.

Racing has been suspended since March 5 but is expected to resume Friday, pending the board's votes.

Track owner Belinda Stronach says "the current system is broken" and that standards must be raised to modernize horse racing.

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