Friday, February 22, 2008

Barbaro's final return to Churchill Downs

Barbaro will return to the site of his greatest victory after Churchill Downs was selected on Tuesday as the 2006 Kentucky Derby winner's final resting place.
Barbaro captured the hearts of horse racing fans around the world for waging a brave fight for survival following a horrific breakdown at the Preakness Stakes in May of that year.
The colt's ashes will be interred outside Gate 1 at Churchill Downs in a large elevated space enclosed by bricks.
The memorial site will also include a larger-than-life size bronze statue commissioned by Barbaro's owners Roy and Gretchen Jackson.
The popular colt will become the only horse buried on the grounds of Churchill Downs.
The adjacent museum has the remains of four Kentucky Derby winners interred on its property -- Sunny's Halo (1983), Carry Back (1961), Swaps (1955), and Broker's Tip (1933).
"Gretchen and I are pleased to be collaborating with Churchill Downs in this wonderful project," said Roy Jackson on the Churchill Downs Web site (
"In the year that has just preceded, we have spent much time thinking about Barbaro's memorial and where it would be best placed. Churchill Downs became the obvious site for us.
"It was here that he ran his best race. It was here where we spent our most memorable day as horse owners and breeders. It was here where his racing fans could visit daily and it was here at Churchill Downs where he was cordially invited to rest."
Unbeaten Barbaro shattered three bones in his right hind leg and was pulled up before the first turn at the Preakness.
The colt battled for eight months in a Pennsylvania veterinary hospital but succumbed to the injuries and was euthanized one year ago.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been raised in Barbaro's name to help find a cure for laminitis, the hoof disease that ultimately caused his death.
The Big G

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