Big Brown Fails…Miserably.

As I said before, I am certainly no expert on horse racing. In fact, I don’t know much about it at all. What I do know is that the much hyped Belmont Stakes ended with Triple Crown contender Big Brown finishing dead last.

I watched a few of the human interest pieces about Rick Dutrow, trainer for Big Brown and his daughter, but that didn’t make me like him any more. Anyone who trash talks about a race horse just doesn’t impress me. Having said that, I would’ve liked to see Big Brown win the Triple Crown, since there hasn’t been one since 7 years before I was born. The story about jockey Kent Desormeaux and his son did impress me and gave me another reason to cheer on the horse.

I told my roommates before the race that I didn’t think it would be close and that Big Brown would win a yawner, which would take away from the excitement of a Triple Crown. I wanted to see something like Smarty Jones and Birdstone down the stretch with Big Brown barely pulling it out in the end. I thought I might get to see it about halfway through the race, but then Big Brown decided he wanted to jog the final stretch and retire to a life of oat bags and mares.

My initial thought was that the crack on his hoof had gotten worse and that we’d have to hear from PETA for the next 6 months when they had to put the horse down. No one wanted that, just for the sheer annoyance that they cause.

Anyway, Big Brown finished last after coming into the race undefeated. This will put an end to the horse racing articles until next year’s Kentucky Derby unless, of course, they can bring Barbaro back from the dead.

Comparing Horses to People

The death of Eight Belles has garnered a lot of attention around the sports world recently, so I figure I’ll jump in on this hot topic. I realize this is a touchy issue for many people, so feel free to agree or disagree with me in the comments.

I will start off by saying that the death of Eight Belles is nothing short of a tragedy and I feel terrible for the owners, trainer, and jockey. All this talk of PETA trying to get the jockey, Gabriel Saez, suspended is crazy to me. If anyone saw the post-race interviews they could clearly see how much the people involved were shaken. I’m not horse racing aficionado, but I know that if there was anything that could have been done to avoid the situation, it would have been done with no hesitation. Woody Paige mentioned on ESPN’s Around the Horn today that on average, something like two thoroughbred horses are euthanized in the USA per day. I would be all for an investigation as to why this number is so high. I just don’t think suspending the jockey who tried to pull the horse up when he felt something was wrong would get anything accomplished.

Having said all that, there is one thing that has really bothered me about this whole process. On at least three occasions I have heard the following analogy: This would be the same thing as if the quarterback collapsed and died in the locker room after the Super Bowl. Bill Plaschke said it. Eight Belles’ owner said it. Several ESPN anchors said it. To them I say, “No. It’s not the same. At all.” Eight Belles’ death was tragic and terrible, but she was a horse. That quarterback would be a human. There is no comparison whatsoever. If Plaschke was given the choice of letting a horse be euthanized or letting any football player collapse and die, he would pick the horse every single time. It’s morbid, I know, but it just proves the point. This analogy they keep using is terrible and I wish they would stop and think about what they’re saying before they say it.

Now that you see what I think, let me know how you feel. Think the horse’s life is more valuable than Tom Brady’s? Weller, don’t answer, but all the rest of you leave a comment.

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