Barbaro Updates: 497
updates are now here.
Update 3033: Just off the phone with Jennifer Rench from New Bolton. Quick update, ABC6 and NBC10 were there today interviewing Dr. Richardson, that will be shown (at least) locally on the evening news I guess. Lots of flowers and baskets arrived today. There is also now a second poster on the fence.
Update 3032: Some great news today from South Dakota: Slaughter Bill Killed in S.D. This incident is a timely reminder of the importance of ending slaughter at the Federal level. Please join fellow horse advocates in DC on March 4 and 5 to help make this happen: An Invitation from Paula Bacon.
Update 3031: We have a name for Barbaro's yearling full brother: Barbaro to be interred at Churchill Downs, it concludes:
As the days count down to the second anniversary of Barbaro's Kentucky Derby triumph, Gretchen Jackson said she has taken solace in following the progress of Barbaro's two full siblings--a two-year-old colt named Nicanor and a yearling they have decided to call Lentenor.
"We went down and saw Nicanor just last week, and he's looking great ... doing fine," she said. "He's coming along just as the average two-year-old would ... except he's carrying a tremendous amount of baggage."
Update 3030: I am on air, on break and coming back after the break (update 3029)!
Update 3029: I am scheduled to be on At the Races with Steve Byk at 4:15 Eastern Time today. Its on Sirius channel 126 and live streming from http://www.thoroughbredracingradionetwork.com.
An update from Penny at timwoolleyracing.com:
With all of the media coverage this Tuesday morning I have spent the morning reminiscing about the brilliant life and tragic loss of Barbaro. The announcement came earlier this morning that his place of rest would be at Churchill. What a wonderful place. There have been a lot of great things that have come out of his unfortunate death. He has helped bring so much needed awareness to important issues. We are thankful for the Fan's of Barbaro and all of the people who have given money for the rescue of our friends and to the research for laminitis. The developement of aritificial surfaces, like the Tapeta track at Fair Hill, gives horsemen another tool to keep their horses sound and out of harms way. Every bit of help we can get to keep these animals safe we will gladly take. Hopefully the horse industry as a whole will continue to develope new ways to further enrich the lives of these wonderful beasts. Barbaro touched a lot of people in every walk of life if only for a brief moment in time. He is not easily forgotten!!!
Update 3028: Superfecta here, with your regular Tuesday update on a rather unusual Tuesday:
One year ago today, I was working feverishly to keep the Penn Vet servers up and running against the sudden onslaught of traffic when the news of Barbaro's death had been announced. Unsurprisingly, given the difficulties of communication in a school with two campuses, the news went out over the wires before most of the staff was notified, which led to some quite harried scenes.
Rather unwisely, we had no plan in place to deal with that eventuality, even though it had been quite clear for several days that things were looking rather grim (and, indeed, that his prognosis had been deemed 'poor' in July). I had been at New Bolton the Thursday before and happened to notice in passing that Gretchen Jackson looked a little more concerned than usual, although I didn't think too much of it at the time. Friday I heard that the outlook was not good but that options were still being evaluated. I went to a luncheon on Saturday and when it was discovered that I worked at Penn Vet, there were naturally a few questions about Barbaro (although the prevailing understanding seemed to be 'I thought he got better and went home' for some reason). I responded that while I wasn't in a position to say anything official nor was I close to the clinical end of things, as someone who had experience around horses, I didn't think he'd last the weekend -- I was actually a little surprised that they waited until Monday to put him down, since Sunday would have given a little more privacy (and time for everyone involved to prepare for the press (and internet traffic) the next day).
UPenn 'central' seemed like they were less than happy with us for asking for help with image hosting and the like when the day came -- indeed, they had taken little interest in the Barbaro situation since shortly after he arrived. Nonetheless, they did pitch in (for a fee -- each part of Penn is essentially its own business and is run accordingly) and the site stayed up, despite very shaky infrastructure (which is why the donation sites are all hosted elsewhere -- so that part of the Vet School could use a big donation as well).
Did things go on too long? Perhaps a bit, but it's certainly not the worst case I've seen. I knew a stallion who had been terribly burned in a fire (the other three horses involved were killed), but because of his value as a stud, he was kept alive (often in obvious pain, and very disfigured) for almost a year after the event, suffering through infections and foundering a few times before a vet finally insisted that enough was enough. Barbaro had more good days than bad and I always had the sense that everyone realized that even in the best case scenario, a normal, successful stud career was not terribly likely (given the logistics) and so decisions were not made with that as a goal. But was it worth trying? Sure.
Burying his ashes at Churchill Downs seems fitting -- it's already a public space and anything that recalls his final 1/16th of a mile in the Derby is a worthy endeavor.
Update 3027: I did a brief phone interview for WUKY 91.3 FM out of Lexington KY. It should air sometime this afternoon for those in the Lexington area. I am also supposed to be on Sirius radio later today (4:15 east coast I think).
Update on Barbaro's ashes: Barbaro's ashes will be buried at Churchill Downs, excerpt:
The ashes will be buried at the center of a brick plaza outside the track's Gate 1, which also is near the entrance to the Kentucky Derby Museum. The Jacksons have commissioned a statue of the horse to mark the gravesite.
Update 3026: I love this article: Remembering Barbaro: Kentucky Derby Winner Changed Thousands of Lives.
Update 3025: A year ago today, January 29, 2007, a heroic Barbaro lost his fight for life. We can all remember where we were when we received the tragic news. For me, I was driving back to Fair Hill to meet someone when I received a call.
What I was not so prepared for was the tremendous work that has continued in recognition of a horse who stood for everything we aspire. At 10:30 am today, Eastern Time, we are holding a vigil. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, please at that time spare some thoughts for a great racehorse and an inspiration for us all to continue his legacy.
At 10:00 am eastern time there will be a press conference held at Churchill Downs hosted by the Jacksons. This conference appears to be to announce the burial site and memorial for Barbaro: A lasting peace for Barbaro, excerpt:
The Jacksons are going to commission the statue and loan it to Churchill Downs as part of the official Barbaro Memorial Site. The site will be free and accessible to the public 24 hours a day. The Jacksons considered several options for Barbaro's ashes before deciding on Churchill.
"Churchill was where he had his most memorable race," Gretchen Jackson said yesterday. "It will be accessible to all the people who loved him so much. It was hard to wrestle with, but it's just the right place. And Churchill has been great with all this."
Today will see some added Barbaro press coverage, and some of that focus is also on Barbaro's legacy. The following are two examples:
Barbaro's Legacy: A year after death, horse lives on as a vital Web symbol., excerpt:
The "Fans of Barbaro," as they call themselves, have helped save more than 1,900 horses from slaughter by donating more than $800,000, said Alex Brown, an exercise rider who administers the Web site, which is located at www.alexbrownracing.com. Each week, horse rescuers go on his site and ask for donations to help save horses.
Barbaro's spirit carries on one year after his death, excerpt:
"I think it has been absolutely remarkable that so many of the Fans of Barbaro participate in horse rescue," Gretchen Jackson said. "Isn't that absolutely remarkable; just a real grassroots movement that has accomplished something, made some changes. It's excellent; if we could just get the [anti-slaughter] bill through Congress it would be even more remarkable."
Please keep calling and writing.