Whether you’re a veteran handicapper or just go to the track once in a while to watch the ponies run, you will more than likely be saddened to hear that Barbaro was put down this morning after a long battle with complications related to multiple breaks in one of his rear legs at the start of the Preakness race last year.

(USA Today/AP article)
Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro was euthanized Monday after complications from his breakdown at the Preakness last May.

“We just reached a point where it was going to be difficult for him to go on without pain,” co-owner Roy Jackson said. “It was the right decision, it was the right thing to do. We said all along if there was a situation where it would become more difficult for him then it would be time.”

Roy and Gretchen Jackson were with Barbaro on Monday morning, with the owners making the decision in consultation with chief surgeon Dean Richardson.

It was a series of complications, including laminitis in the left rear hoof and a recent abscess in the right rear hoof, that proved to be too much for the gallant colt, whose breakdown brought an outpouring of support across the country.

“I would say thank you for everything, and all your thoughts and prayers over the last eight months or so,” Jackson said to Barbaro’s fans.