Once again denied the Triple Crown

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 3, 2008

Another Belmont Stakes, another year in the drought of Triple Crown winners.

Everyone just knew that this year was different.

Big Brown was special.

He could pull it off.

His biggest competitor in the race scratched, so it was his for the taking.

I even believe his trainer, Rick Dutrow Jr., used the words &uot;foregone conclusion.&uot;


I have a few comments about Dutrow, but I’ll get to those in a little bit.

First of all, I was pulling for Big Brown.

We’ve been so close to Triple Crown winners a handful of times in the last decade, but none of them have pulled through.

It’s a tough feat to accomplish, which is why there hasn’t been a Triple Crown winner since 1978.

During the Belmont, it just looked like Big Brown didn’t have any more gas left in the tank.

And instead of pushing him further than he wanted to go, jockey Kent Desormeaux pulled up and finished last.

Someone was of the opinion that that was the absolute wrong thing to do.

True winners never quit, even when they know they’re not going to come out on top.

I don’t agree with that.

I think Desormeaux made the right call.

Athletes know how far they can push themselves and how far is too far.

This is a man on a horse.

He doesn’t know what that animal is feeling.

If he thought there was something even the least bit wrong, he had a responsibility to pull back, and that’s what he did.

Especially after what happened to Eight Belles after the Kentucky Derby, can you imagine the uproar if something similar happened because a jockey pushed too hard?

Good call, Desormeaux.

Remember I mentioned Dutrow, the trainer, earlier?

Talking about pulling Big Brown up, Dutrow’s words were, &uot;I don’t know why had to do that.&uot;


Personally, I think he’s just a little bit miffed that his mouth wrote a check he couldn’t cash and he ended up eating crow.

All he talked about leading up to the race was how Big Brown was going to win, how much he was going to win by and other such self-praise.

I guess the last-place finish might be called karma.

Dutrow’s horse lost, so he just needs to deal with it and not blame anyone because things happen.

Maybe this guy’s 15 minutes will be up soon and we can stop having to hear him whine and make excuses.

In the meantime, I guess we’ll have to keep waiting for the next Triple Crown winner.