Monday, May 5, 2008

Welcome to Uncle Freddy's World!

I have been threatening to start a blog for a long time. I think the blogosphere has been overdone by self-named experts and people with no sense of what makes a good blog. So I stayed out of it because I thought the last thing the world needed was another bad blog.
So hopefully, this will not be that. You'll find some sports takes here. Lots of attempts at humor. Some deeper insight into some of my radio takes. This won't be masturbatory; it won't be about me. It will be about what I see in the world.
Today we'll start with a horse racing take. I covered the sport for years before I became sports editor for the Houston Chronicle. (Side note: I left the Chron because I was sick of a lot of stuff that had nothing to do with the newspaper itself. I still like the place and some of the people, but I will rip them on occasion for bad journalism).
You didn't read this in the Chronicle or many other places, because there is rarely deeper insight into horse racing. Perhaps few care, but the death of the filly Eight Belles was underreported around the country, and the real issue was ignored.
PETA got involved, ripping the horse's jockey and wanting him suspended.
As usual PETA, you got it wrong. The horse was not hurt when she finished or she would have broken down before the finish line.
Want someone to blame? Her trainer. Her owner.
Asking a filly to run 1 1/4 miles against top colts when she already had a hard campaign was irresponsible. Maybe the accident was a fluke, but I am betting the overexertion from her outstanding effort was the reason.
The Triple Crown races are grueling. There is a reason only three fillies have won the Derby.
Rags to Riches won the Belmont last year and was never the same, and she was bred to go 1 1/2 miles.
Derby Fever is dangerous. Maybe the effort was too much, maybe not. But it wasn't the jockey's fault or the track's fault.
Her trainer only needs to look in the mirror.


Helen Olin said...

I was hoping you'd address that. What a tragedy. Looking forward to more blog posts ...

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