Lawsuit Challenges Gulfstream Park’s Claims of Canal Pollution


Posted on: November 1, 2023, 07:13h.

Last updated on: November 1, 2023, 07:13h.

Florida’s Gulfstream Park racetrack denies allegations of pollution with horse manure made by its former general counsel, Michael Fucheck. The accusations involve the leaking of contaminated water into a canal. Fucheck claims to possess evidence of portable pumps being used to conduct this activity. However, Gulfstream Park dismisses the claims as a “frivolous lawsuit” by an ex-employee terminated in 2019.

Gulfstream Park, Michael Fucheck, Florida, pollution
Tiz the Law winning the Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park in 2020. But has the famous racetrack been pumping feces into the canal? It claims not. (Image: Associated Press)

Federal laws strictly regulate the disposal of wastewater from racetracks due to potential risks to humans. Gulfstream Park’s alleged pollution raises concerns as the contaminated water flows into the canal, which is used by millions of people for recreational and business purposes.

Horse feces may contain harmful substances such as salmonella, fecal coliform, and phosphorus. These pose significant health risks to humans,” states Fucheck’s lawsuit.

This is not the first time Gulfstream Park has faced pollution accusations. In 2017, the racetrack settled for $456K with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for similar issues.

Fucheck’s lawsuit is filed under the False Claims Act, which empowers whistleblowers to take legal action against entities suspected of defrauding governmental programs. While the US government has declined to join the case, Fucheck’s lawyer suggests that this decision does not reflect the strength of their claims.

Gulfstream Park, owned by the Stronach Group, is renowned for hosting prestigious races like the Pegasus World Cup and the Florida Derby. The racetrack’s casino holds the distinction of being one of the few parimutuel venues authorized to offer class III ‘Las Vegas-style’ slots outside of the Seminole reservations.

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