Last year, there weren’t very many horses who popped onto my radar as good two-year-olds. Of that amount, fewer kept my interest in them strong enough to track them throughout their current three-year-old year. And even fewer (and perhaps what makes this scenario so unique), are the ones I began tracking simply because I loved their butt. I wrote about Dance With Fate back in January, when Kentucky Derby horses are just beginning to take form, listing him as #8 in my first top 10 list of the Derby season. Besides Honor Code, I do believe he was the only horse to stay on that Derby Top 10 list in February and March while serving as my #1 pick in both the El Camino Real Derby (III) and the Blue Grass Stakes (I). I then gave him the thumbs up upon entering the gate for the Kentucky Derby, listing him as my #2 pick. He ran a respectable 6th after a rocky trip, all after being pretty much ignored at the windows at 16-1.
In July, I mentioned on Twitter that I was excited to finally photograph the black beauty, but unfortunately, he was scratched from the Belmont Derby (I) after getting a little colicky. If it was fate that intervened in our meeting, I damn Lady Destiny even more than I have before, as yesterday it was announced that Dance With Fate was dead.
I’m upset that it happened, sad that I never got to see for myself the horse I believed in and followed for so many months, but happy that his pain was kept short. He was not only a beautiful horse, but an animal that was loved dearly by those who cared for him and followed him. Every now and then, tragedy strikes, but in this case I am glad to see the departure of Dance affect so many and on such a deep level. It inspires faith in humanity and the potential for continued years of greatness in Thoroughbred horse racing. Dance may not have lived up to his potential, but he managed to show us a piece of his being that one spring day at Keeneland.
Thank you, Dance.