John Oxley's Danzig Moon, the fifth-place finisher in this year's Kentucky Derby, was euthanized after suffering a fatal injury to his right hind leg in the Plate Trial Stakes at Woodbine on Sunday.
Sent off as the favorite in the race, Danzig Moon was rating second behind pacesetter Midnight Trace when he broke down in late backstretch under jockey Julien Leparoux, backed up quickly and collided with R U Watchingbud.
R U Watchingbud got up and walked off, according to the chart, but Danzig Moon was euthanized after being vanned off in the 11⁄8-mile race.
Leparoux was unhurt in the spill.
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Trained by Mark Casse, Danzig Moon was making his first start since finishing sixth in the Preakness Stakes on May 16. The flashy, bay son of Malibu Moon was affectionately known as "racing's bad boy" by his connections in a nod to his feisty attitude around the barn that often left his human caretakers with bruises.
After breaking his maiden in his third try at Gulfstream Park this February, Danzig Moon stepped onto the Kentucky Derby trail with a fourth-place finish in the Grade II Tampa Bay Derby and a runner-up finish to Carpe Diem in the Grade I Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland on April 4.
"We knew he was always talented, it's just taken him a while to figure out he's a racehorse," Norman Casse, son of Mark Casse and assistant to his father, said going into the Preakness Stakes.
Bred by William D. Graham, Danzig Moon won one of eight career starts and had earnings of $311,445. The colt and the Casse barn were the subject of the Herald-Leader video "Derby Diary" leading up to the first leg of the Triple Crown.