The Derby was marked with joy and sadness yesterday–almost simultaneously. As the celebration for Big Brown’s victory began, fans noticed that filly Eight Belles (finished second) had pulled a Dan Jansen and fallen to the track.
When the veterinary staff came to the scene, they realized how gruesome her injuries were.
From YAHOO SPORTS:
She had broken both front ankles and could not be saved…Dr. Larry Bramlage, the Derby’s on-call veterinarian, said the filly’s injuries were too severe to even attempt to move her off the track.
“She didn’t have a front leg to stand on to be splinted and hauled off in the ambulance, so she was euthanized,” Bramlage said.
Trainer Larry Jones paid tribute to his fallen filly saying, “She ran the race of her life.”
Eight Belles was the first female horse to run in the Derby since 1999, and obviously the injury brings back memories of Barbaro from two years ago. But since this filly was put down right away, there’s no chance of a You’re Gonna Make It! campaign for Eight Belles, though that may not stop some of the maniacs that need any excuse to write a letter to a horse.