Bred for Speed ... Built for Trouble

Fixing the broken Barbaro took extraordinary surgical skill. But the disaster raises new questions about how hard we push our horses

Much as we try, we can't stop humanizing our horses. This one's got the heart of a champion; that one has the guts of a mudder. We don't really know if there's anything behind all that anthropomorphizing. But we do know that a horse can suffer as we do--feeling pain, fear, confusion and shock. All of that was on display at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Md., when Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro shattered his right rear leg at the Preakness Stakes just moments out of the gate. It was the most stunning racehorse disaster since the death of the famous filly Ruffian...

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