Fortunately, Mastery's injury appeared repairable, and it may not even be career-ending. Nonetheless, Saturday's events are a reminder of both the beauty and the fragility of these magnificent animals, and how heartbreaking the dreams associated with them can be.
The loss of Mastery from the Triple Crown trail leaves the sophomore male division in a continued jumble, with Tapwrit now having thrust himself into the picture by a sparkling win in the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby (USA-II). One cannot entirely overlook Iliad, either, as his clear-cut second-place finish behind Mastery suggests that he may not be limited to sprint distances. Perhaps McCraken will prove the superstar many hope to see when he makes his final Derby prep, but in a season of surprises and disappointments, who can tell?