I am not the only one sick with anger and sadness but I’ll hear you out after you, me. I hate dirt now. I also hate people who’ll chant the artificial and carry the placards for change. I hate hurried post parades. I really hate horses standing in small spaces most of the day. I hate people who leave their dogs alone for hours past cruelty and then rationalize, “They sleep.” If your dog can’t spend quality time daily with someone she loves, then don’t get a fucking dog. I hate jockeys who win by 12 when they can win by 6. A stick to the face should be an automatic year. Excess whipping should be returned in the same manner to the offender. People who root for numbers and not the horses wearing them cause me grinding embarrassment. People who call horses pigs and rats and bums have a right to exist, just stay out of my space. I hate racing when your fingers are too cold to smoke a cigar. When horses drop from the heat, I am ill with the guilt of aiding and abetting. The Belmont Stakes distance is ridiculous. Twenty-horse fields are freakish and taunt fate. Horses should be running more to strengthen the breed and yet they run too much. Fast times are for the stupid; Secretariat could’ve won by 31 in 2:44, the statue would still be there. When a horse flips in the gate, we should all engage in some sort of brotherly empathettic self-harm. Why can’t every horse walk through a bone scan before every race? I feel bad for nervous baby horses in the paddock. I hate that vets aren’t listed in the Form and in the programs. All trainers should have a year’s notice to get their horses off the junk. Horses shouldn’t be racing if they’re bleeding. If given even the slightest warning that my horse were going wrong or merely tiring, I’d pull a Desormeaux every time. I won’t feel right watching tomorrow’s races. Today for me was the darkest in…I can’t remember. Old calcified pros don’t break down. Family members don’t break down. I once called Wanderin Boy one of the greatest sparring partners in history. Shame on fucking me. Wanderin Boy, always, left it all out on the track, to the very last day. This Quirkycap should’ve been a celebration of Cowboy Larry’s Old Fashioned and the Canadian filly who cupped and slammed a Demoiselle field that included who I thought was the surest of sure things, Sky Diva. Jimmy Jerkens was out near the winner’s circle BEFORE Quality Road even entered the gate for his first start. That is a serious racehorse. Maybe not Old Fashioned or Vineyard Haven but ser-ee-us. This terrible crop of three year olds copped the exacta in the Cigar; Prado didn’t claim; healthy controversy and debate. Canada didn’t deserve another blow but this one, this one ain’t nothin. Right now, tonight, I am proud to have known Wanderin Boy; he was forever honest and talented enough to push many a great horse to a higher plane. But right now, tonight, I hate this game and I’m also a little ashamed of myself. Maybe Cosell wasn’t all wrong when he turned his back on the sport that made him. Is horse racing as bad as boxing, and why do I love both. But not tonight.
Saturday, November 29, 2008 11:25 pm