So Barbaro has finally been euthanized.
I've been one of the few people out there who wasn't sick of the story. Yes, the story did go on for too long. Were it not for the possibility of a huge financial payoff, Barbaro probably wouldn't have made it away from Pimlico. The possibility of a huge financial payoff undoubtedly kept Barbaro from being put down. This post is something that I should have been writing in May.
The day that Barbaro broke down in the Preakness was the same day that Barry Bonds hit #714. I know which one I will remember more.
I'll admit it, I teared up a little when I saw Edgar Prado's reactions that day. The possibility of death is not something we should have to deal with in sports, but unfortunately, there are times when that is not always the case.
It's not often that it happens in sports where humans are the competitors. There have been cases in auto racing, such as Dale Earnhardt's death at Daytona. Other sports have also experienced loss during the game. There are other career-ending incidents that will stay forever in our minds, like LT's hit on Joe Theismann.
We'll never know what Barbaro could have done. Perhaps the Triple Crown was possible. Perhaps even a healthy Barbaro would have lost. I do know that I will always remember the saddness of watching that last race.
No athlete should be disposable. Yet for some reason, people are quick to dismiss racing animals. Why should they receive only a couple of minutes of our attention? Why should they not receive the same attention that a human would have? If they are worthy of our bets, then they should also receive attention beyond that. Horses are just as much of athletes as anybody else that we watch.
Today, horse racing lost a great one. The video above is of Barbaro's victory in last year's Kentucky Derby. Watch Barbaro blow past the field, and be happy that I didn't choose the video I found on Youtube that is set to Michael Bolton.