"Eight Belles, who finished second [in the Kentucky Derby 4 3/4 lengths behind Big Brown], had to be humanely destroyed on the track, after breaking both ankles as jockey Gabriel Saez was pulling her up after passing the finish line . . .
Dr. Larry Bramlege the on-call veterinarian from the American Association of Equine Practitioners said on NBC that the the horse broke both front ankles. She was euthanized on the track." (From the Louisville Courier).
This always just burns me up when something like this happens and it's lost in the celebration of the win. That Filly's owner must be devastated---she was euthanized where she fell and I'm just sick. It bring up the point some have made about whether 3 year old horses are really old enough to race yet. But everyone is in such a hurry to get in as much breeding time from the winners that they forget these horses are still awfully young and are always somewhat delicate. I really didn't pay attention to the race this year and had just walked back in the house as the race was in its last minute or so. I put a few groceries away and turned back to the television and saw that a horse was down. I wish Churchill Downs had come to a standstill the way my heart did--at least until everyone knew what had happened. Sad Day