It’s almost impossible to list the final result of an athlete the day before his or her event begins.
On Friday morning in Belmont Park, I’ll Have Another’s fate leaked out from Doug O’Neill’s barn through Twitter and Facebook.
The final chart will say SCR, short for scratched. I’ll Have Another won’t start in the 144th Belmont Stakes. The last horse who had a shot to win the Triple Crown, Big Brown in 2008, didn’t finish the race. He will finish his career at Baltimore, with a win in the Preakness Stakes. His final year of racing he went undefeated. He becomes a huge “what if” in the grand scheme of horse racing lore.
Your heart goes out to all the connections of the horse. The owner, trainer and jockey all must be devastated, but all had to take in the safety of the horse in this mile and a half run. It’s not a regular gallop, this is the test of the champion. Sometimes you can succeed and fail at the same time.
My heart goes out to NBC. They now have two and a half hours to fill of video that took two and a half weeks to produce that’s garbage. We will never see their wonderful work. That’s not a paid endorsement. NBC’s horse racing coverage is the best in the business by far. They spend more time and craft better stories than anyone else. It’s a shame most of this will land in a trash can. (All for a two and a half-minute race!)
The streak continues. 34 years without a Triple Crown. They will still run the race on Saturday at Belmont. There’s just no hero in this movie.
Follow Dash on Twitter @WBALDash for all things sport. And other things of note.