Monday, May 05, 2008

Big Brown Bleh Weekend

I made a slight mistake this weekend. I actually looked forward to something. In my past, I have found that looking forward to something small usually causes something to go awry. Lets look at the Super Bowl, when dammit I was rooting for the Patriots.

The Derby is something I usually do well on. In fact, the last 5 years, I have been spot on with the winner, though this year I was a tad off. Danged Pyro! But, also, I Twinspires let me down by allowing the site to go down 45 minutes before the Derby actually began.

I was all for Pyro and Visionaire, though I also put a sprinkle of money down for Eight Belles, because she was the only Filly, and Mrs Duck could be a bit of a sports fan. The race itself, up until the end was a tad dull, Big Brown was the class of the field, which is evidenced by the fact that none of the Derby horses are going to actually decide run against him in the Preakness. So overall, the race was not exciting.

Well, exciting in the fact that My Old Kentucky home was still an Extreme Home Makeover moment, and the race was the fastest 2 minutes in sports. Until...

Eight Belles pulled up after the finish. With hindsight being 20/20, the poor girl did seem to be laboring a bit at the end, though she still cleared all the other nags by a good 2 or 3 furlongs. So, to see Big Brown throw his jockey, you know it was not a good thing, because he was spooked by the falling of Eight Belles. My first words were of course, Oh Fuck. To see the black beauty laboring on the dirt, breathing heavily, obviously in distress, you knew the news would not be good. To see not one but two ambulances coming out to shield the crowd, the news just got worse.

There were a few idiots in the aftermath and the celebration. One, whoever is the CEO of Yum Brands. If they are busy putting a horse down about 50 feet away from you, you do not say what a great day it was with a big ass goofy smile on your face. #2 is the speechwriter for the Governor of Kentucky. One would think that you would be a voice for one of the 50 states in the Union, you may wanna run up and scribble something down for the Governor, just to say how sorry you were, etc etc. Finally, Rick Dutrow. I get the feeling that the rest of the horse racing community does not like you that much already, to begrudingly, finally say you felt a tad bit sorry for the owners of Eight Belles, who really almost beat your horse, is a tad slow.

For once, I may not be rooting for a Triple Crown.


Jenny McB said...

One of our supervisors is a horse owner and all she could say was that these horses running are "babies" young and not really race ready. Eight Belles shouldn't have been in the race.

Did you catch the girl chewing gum front stage and center during the interviews after the race?

Anonymous said...

I actually made a comment to the people around me about that dumb bimbo chewing gum on national TV. I need to find the youtube link for that

Bond said...

Sad state of affairs. These horses are bred to run...those who are now shouting about the horrors of horse racing are jumping on the tragedy bandwagon and I despise when that happens

Nancy said...

Hey! I did not hear about this....Sad state of affairs indeed.

Thanks for coming by!!

Nick Huhn said...

Hey guys-

On behalf of Yum! Brands, we just wanted to extend our sympathies to you and all of the other fans of Eight Belles. Her injury and death were tragic and regrettable, and we are deeply apologetic that comments by our CEO and others interviewed immediately after the race seemed very insensitive given the circumstances.

The truth is, the full extent of Eight Belles' injury was not known by those interviewed by Bob Costas in the winner's circle. Everyone was aware of the injury, but the severity of it was not known. Had he known then what he knows today, everyone's comments would have had a different tone.

We regret that the remarks appeared insensitive and we fully understand that. We hope you and your readers understand that he simply did not know the facts yet, and we apologize for any misunderstanding. We truly sympathize with anyone associated with Eight Belles, including her owner, trainer, jockey and many fans.

Hopefully this helps clarify the circumstances. Feel free to follow up if I can be of service to you.

Nick Huhn / Yum! Brands

Hyperion said...

I'm not a big horse racing guy, but I have been watching the Triple Crown religiously for 20 years. I'm curious what the best horse and horse races you have seen.

The best duels were with Easy Goer and Sunday Silence, late '80s I think. The best horse, hands-down, was Point Given. To this day I can't figure out why he lost the Derby (his only loss ever, I believe). Just didn't want to win that one. Man, did he dominate in the Preakness and Belmont.