Friday’s 9th race at Keeneland was a $100,000 Grade 3. In other words, the kind of race that typically garners press coverage. Owing to such coverage, we now know that one of those under the whip that evening, a 4-year-old filly named Back in Dixie, broke then was euthanized. Dead. (Much as they’d prefer to ignore such unpleasantries, the beat writers are almost forced to acknowledge deaths in big races. How unfortunate, though, for dead animals tend to mar otherwise happy recaps.)

The Lexington Herald-Leader’s account included jockey Channing Hill’s description of and reaction to Back in Dixie’s death:

“…it really felt like someone grabbed me, like grabbed my hind end because she kind of stumbled. By the third step I knew…the bone [had] separated. She just showed her class by keeping herself up. This is absolutely heartbreaking. You don’t get too many classy mares that are this nice. This is the worst part about the game, especially the horses that give you everything.”

“showed her class by keeping herself up”

“absolutely heartbreaking”

“don’t get too many classy mares that are this nice”

“worst part about the game”


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