No Horseplay Allowed When Naming One

The Jockey Club screens names for vulgarity, offensiveness
By Doug Sweeney,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2007 12:09 PM CDT
In this photo released by the New York Racing Association, Irish Smoke, ridden by Julien R. Leparoux, captures The Spinaway stakes horse race at Saratoga Race Course Sunday, Sept. 2, 2007, in Saratoga...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Good luck giving your racehorse a racy name. Horse racing's governing body goes to great lengths to squash obscene monikers; censors check proposed thoroughbred name requests against a slang dictionary, and phonetics software weeds out ones that might be, or sound, offensive. Of the 60,000 names submitted to the Jockey Club annually, about one-third are rejected, reports Slate. 

Though the 103-year-old club nixed Nutzapper earlier this year, its history of letting suggestive names slip through has allowed horses like Spank It and Wrecked Em take to the track. The discrepancy brought on a lawsuit; in August an appeals court upheld the Club's right as a private organization to restrict free speech, provided it doesn't discriminate against specific viewpoints.