Big Brown foot injury may retire him to the shed (US)

Big Brown, by Sports Illustrated photographer, Heinz Kluetmeier
Big Brown, by Sports Illustrated photographer, Heinz Kluetmeier

We love Big Brown, this year’s Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner, who stunned racing enthusiasts and pundits alike by finishing dead last in the final leg of the Triple Crown at Belmont.

Haunted by foot troubles by way of cracked heels, Big Brown tore a chunk of flesh out of his off hind foot while working out at Aqueduct. It is most likely he will never see another racecourse and go straight to the breeding shed. Nice work if you can get it I guess.

It will be interesting to see how well he does. Vets tell us steroid usage hinders fertility.

Let’s hope not or Big Brown may end up as a big brown steak on somebody’s plate — TH.

ESPN tells us this:

There was nothing little about Big Brown’s racing career.

From his overpowering victories in the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness to his spectacular flop in the Belmont as he bid for a Triple Crown, Big Brown and his entourage — including his maverick owner and outspoken trainer — simply didn’t do subtle.

Yet less than two weeks away from his final race, the brilliant champion with brittle feet ended his career not with a victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita but in front of a few stunned onlookers at Aqueduct following an otherwise routine workout.

Michael Iavarone of IEAH Stables, co-owners of Big Brown, said his horse tore a three-inch piece of flesh off the foot after it collided with his right rear foot while working over Aqueduct’s turf course with stablemate Kip Deville.

“This was a complete fluke,” Iavarone said. “He hadn’t had issues with his feet for a while and to have him come up just like this was a shock to all of us.”

The injury could take at least two months to heal, making it impossible for Big Brown to run in the BC Classic on Oct. 25 at Santa Anita. Big Brown is due at Three Chimneys Farm in Midway, Ky., by the end of the year to begin his stud career, preventing him from getting back on the track one last time.

“We don’t have a choice but to retire him,” Iavarone said. “It’s gut-wrenching.”

The injury itself isn’t life-threatening, Iavarone said, but added it’s important to make sure infection doesn’t set in while he recovers.

“I expect the next few days to be pretty rough on him,” Iavarone said. “We’ve got to take care of him.” >> Read whole story at ESPN Sports

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
This story is from’s automated news wire.

Arrow Right Grfx JOE DRAPE, writing for the New York Times, reports that Big Brown is indeed retiring. >> Read “Big Brown Retiring After Hurting Hoof”.

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