Sunday, May 4, 2008

2008 Kentucky Derby!

As I predicted yesterday (see Sat's blog post) Big Brown did win the Kentucky Derby! It was a gorgeous day for the races and Billy Bush did a pre-race hour of "Access at the Derby" that was so much fun. Big Brown started in the WORST post position at 20 waaay on the outside and he was one of the few horses ever to win from that position. He didn't dominate the field from the beginning, but took his time getting to the front and won by 5 lengths.

The other favorites, Pryo and Colonel John, just didn't fire yesterday. Pyro got blocked within seconds of being out of the gate and never overcame it.

But the race did end in tragedy. The only filly, Eight Belles, came in second and I was screaming that she did so well. She was galloping out after the race when she fell to the ground and never got up. She broke both ankles and was euthanized on the spot. That's an incredibly painful break and there was no chance she'd ever have a pain-free or normal life after that sort of injury. I couldn't imagine how her owners, trainers and the rest of the Fox Hill Farms family felt. She rallied to second and then had that happen. Sigh.

Aside from that, though, the stories of Derby owners and trainers were especially inspiring this year. The two co-owners for Gayego were Cuban immigrants who had been jailed under Castro and fought their way to the US. Another trainer was 70 years old and it was his first shot at a Derby win. One Derby contender was bought for only $4500.

Today, is my other favorite horse event--the Rolex Kentucky. It starts at 5pm EST on NBC and I tape it every year to watch the dressage, cross-country and stadium jumping when I need inspiration.

It's definitely a weekend filled with horses!


PJ Hoover said...

Wow, sad about Eight Belles. Horse racing is like this whole other world I know nothing about!

Jessica Burkhart (Jess Ashley) said...

I know. So very sad.

Stephanie J said...

That was so awful about Belles. I get emotional with that sort of thing. I'm glad that she's in a better place and won't be living in pain, tho. I really feel for the farm as well.

Exciting day, tho! I'm a big Triple Crown follower. I wasn't rooting for anyone but I like that Big Brown has had such a strong showing. I wonder how his feet will hold up over the long run. What's your opinion on how he'll hold up at the Belmont Stakes (assuming Preakness is good)?

Jessica Burkhart (Jess Ashley) said...

Big Brown HAD to do well after his people bragged all week long about their star. They were right, though.

If BB does well in the Preakness (can't wait!) I'm betting he does well in the Belmont. I'd love, love to see a Triple Crown winner.

But I really think Colonel John and Pyro will be back in form in 2 weeks. Pyro really got blocked and he may have more to give in the Preakness. Very interesting.

Stephanie J said...

Glad you mention Pyro. I wasnt outright rooting for anyone but I was watching our for him.

Gosh, at this rate I just hope I see a Triple Crown winner in my lifetime!

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