The ultimate in "thrill of victory" and the agony of defeat. I watched the Kentucky Derby live as I've done pretty much every year that I can remember being alive. Favorite Big Brown won the race, the first horse to pull off a win from the 20th position since the 1950s.
Sadly, Eight Belles who finished second pulled up just past the finish line, apparently having broken both front ankles. She was immediately euthanized.
The emotional whirlwind of being excited for the Big Brown team to seeing Eight Belles on the ground, then seeing the the equine ambulances pull up was quite extreme.
The time lapse from "usually that's some type of heart problem or aneurism to hearing the reports that the filly had broken both of her front ankles and was immediately euthanized was brief. A very jarring and tragic outcome. I've loved animals all my life and find horses among the most beautiful, the experience really tugs at my heart. Horse racing at times can be both very beautiful and very brutal.