Maybe it's just me, but I never "got" horse racing as a sport. Sure, the animals are incredibly beautiful, but the industry encourages ever-more muscled horses, which puts an incredible strain on the forelegs, hind legs, etc., making incidents such as this one inevitable: http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/other_sports/20080506_Uncertainty_hangs_over_Eight_Belles_tragedy.html. Just two years ago, we went through the whole Barbaro soap opera, and again, it was much the same story. A horse breaks down either during or immediately after a race. In Barbaro's case, the horse lived another eight to nine months before the veterinarians realized that he couldn't be saved, unlike Eight Belles, who had to be euthenized right on the track minutes after the Kentucky Derby ended.
At what point do we as humans say that we're asking too much of these animals, all in the name of our viewing pleasure? Why is this "sport" even necessary? As an animal lover, I truly wonder about the answers to these questions.