Almost 40 Racehorses Feared Dead in Ontario Stable Fire

A stable in Ontario, Classy Lanes Stables Training Centre, caught fire on Monday night and the owner has confirmed the presence of more than a dozen racehorses in the stable at the time. The co-owner of the stable, Barb Millier, was in Florida when the fire broke out and she called it a “tragedy.”

During an interview, Millier alleged that fires are a barn owner’s worst fear. She explained that “we don’t have a clue what started it or anything at this point,” adding that “[it’s] devastating for all the people there.” She could not confirm the actual number of horses killed in the incident, but she estimated that a total of 40 horses were present at the barn at the time of fire.

Veteran trainer, Ben Wallace, explained that he had been working with 17 horses that were stabled at the barn, and all of them were killed. Among the well-known horses deceased due to the fire was Apprentice Hanover, a bay colt that last month topped $1 million in earnings, and Penji Hanover, which competed in last year’s North America Cup. Wallace stated that “it’s pretty tough to be honest. This is a horse trainer’s nightmare,” adding that those who worked with the animals considered them family. He elucidated that “you hear about [barn fires] very rarely, thank god. But if it does happen, you just have to imagine that your own family is in there and they’re dying to get out … and they just perish.”

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