He’d just won another $90,000 for his owners – this time at the Iroquois Steeplechase in Tennessee. But this would be Arcadius’s last race. Right after he crossed the finish line, the 8-year-old collapsed and died.
This was just the latest in a series of equine catastrophes this year –deaths that just keep raising questions about the whole sorry “sport of kings.”
From the AP report:
Dr. Marty McInturff, one of five official veterinarians on the course, said Arcadius succumbed from “a heart attack” and a possible aneurysm. The results of a necropsy examination are expected Monday at the earliest.
… “The horse ran a valiant race,” [trainer Jonathan] Sheppard said. “And, it’s not like he was struggling during the race. The rider wasn’t aggressive with his whip. After he crossed the finish line, I was talking to the riders of other horses that I had in the race. I looked over and saw that he was down.”
… “The horse ran a beautiful race,” McInturff said. “When he went down, we got to him very quickly and administered medications and an IV. But, his blood pressure dropped very rapidly and we couldn’t save him.”
Journalist Pia Catton talked about the racing business with the Wall Street Journal: