Big Brown was recently recognized at the 38th annual Eclipse Awards in Miami — but the ultimate honor went to his nemesis.
Three horses were in contention for 2008 Horse of the Year — Big Brown, Curlin, and Zenyatta.
The champion Brownie never raced — Curlin — won the top honor — again. He was the first horse to win back-to-back since 1996, and it wasn’t even close. Curlin received 153 votes to Big Brown’s 13.
Now, that’s insulting.
To give Curlin his due, he did win 5 of his 7 races last year, and was the first North-American-based horse to top $10 million in earnings.
Big Brown’s only satisfaction came from winning in the 3-year-old male class over Colonel John, whom he beat in the Kentucky Derby, and Raven’s Pass, the horse who out-ran Curlin in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, which Big Brown skipped after hurting his foot.
Zenyatta, undefeated in all her 7 races, was named top older female or mare.
Big Brown and Curlin are both adjusting to the good life as studs on different farms in Kentucky and probably don’t give a flying carrot about any this.