The Kentucky Derby held its triumphant spectacle in the Bluegrass State and there were brilliant winners andÂ a shocking post-race death. Big Brown won the Kentucky Derby, the so-called “most thrilling two minutes in sports” – and moments after the euphoria of victory came the tragedy of defeat.
The filly, Eight Belles, soon after crossing the finish line, took a spill and suffered a life-ending break in both its front ankles. SheÂ was immediately euthanized. Big Brown was celebrating its victory over Eight Belles by 4 3/4 lengths in a thrilling horse race merely yards away.Â
Immediately, the celebration of 150,000 people turned hauntingly quiet. It took a few moments to sink in, but the reality of the situation lay on the track in front of all of them and a world television audience and before long, it was over. Eight Belles has passed, released from its misery.
The Kentucky Derby has never seen such sensation quickly turn to sadness in its history.