Make Them Wait or Let Them Gallop?

January 9, 2010
Make Them Wait or Let Them Gallop?

Every year, thousands of people gather to watch the world’s most prestigious series of
horse races : The Triple Crown. Ideally, America’s finest three-year-old would win all three
races. But not one Thoroughbred has accomplished this since 1978. So why put the pressure on

At the 2008 Kentucky Derby, a full stadium watched as Eight Belles collapsed after
earning second place. People accused the breeders. They blamed the sport. They assume the
accident was result of immature bones.
Edward McClelland’s article “Let Them Gallop!” explains why people suddenly think
three-year-olds are too young to race. The biggest reason is that they need more time to
mature; they need to finish developing before reaching the track.

This also happens to also be the biggest misconception of racehorses. Although they
don’t reach their peak athletic ability until the age of four or five, there is a reason d why
horses generally start their training at the age of two or three. Just as they discovered dog
years, researchers have discovered the concept of horse years as well. They compare physical
maturity to that of a human, so they correspond with age. By the time a horse reaches the age
of two, he is already eighteen human years – the age of a young adult.
Horses are most spirited at this age. High school seniors experience a rush of excitement
while watching their football team fight for victory. The same rush of excitement is experienced
while equestrians watch their favorite racehorse fight. “What makes it fun and exciting is that
their careers are very new. Some horses move forward and some don’t,” wrote McClelland.

Taking away an athletic opportunity from high school seniors would be a travesty.
The same should apply to three-year old racehorses. Equestrians who understand the sport
would be furious with a higher age limit. The Triple Crown was established to give young racers
their time to shine. Let them gallop!

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Horsewriterlol This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 31, 2010 at 7:57 pm
I think they should make the horses wait, it ruins all the TBs that race as three and two year olds. After their racing days what happens? they go to slaughter outside the us, or they get destoryed some other way.
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