Sweeping changes at a Golden Gate Fields race track after 22 horses die at sister track in SoCal

ALBANY, Calif. (KGO) -- The mysterious death of 22 racehorses at Santa Anita is having an impact on the Golden Gate Fields track in the East Bay.

The Santa Anita Race track is now closed after 22 horses died-- the latest just Thursday, euthanized after a sudden injury.

The same company that owns the Southern California track, also owns Golden Gate Fields in Albany.

Groomers there are bracing for more horses to be shipped north to race at the Golden Gate Fields track instead this weekend.

RELATED: Horse euthanized at Santa Anita Park, becoming 22nd to die

Oscar Cruz is a grooming foreman and said, "My bosses sending more horses for the races. 30 horses down south or more-- I have now 10 more horses."

And on race days-- no more whipping or drugs.

The Stronach Group's Tim Ritvo said, "Today, we are announcing a complete transformation of our race tracks in California."

All joint injections, steroids, and Lasix will be banned.

Lasix helps stop pulmonary bleeding and is a diuretic-- and an empty bladder can help a horse run faster.

Rafael Hernandez has bought nearly a hundred thoroughbreds from Golden Gate Fields to train and groom. He's never had a problem with the horses and he's glad to see all of the changes.

Rafael Hernandez said, "I applaud them for making any changes that will result in more positive results."

PETA meantime sees things differently and wonders, "why are unfit horses being put on the track?"
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