Broken: The Suspicious Death of Alydar and the End of Horseracing’s Golden Age

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Broken: The Suspicious Death of Alydar and the End of Horseracing’s Golden Age by animal attorney Fred M. Kray was an excellent true story. Kray eloquently writes the story of famous racehorse Alydar, who cryptically broke his leg one night alone in his stall. This story speaks of the entire mystery surrounding Alydar’s death—from the horse’s initial injury to judicial trials, investigations, interviews, and more.

As a bit of background, Alydar was an American thoroughbred, dark chestnut-colored racehorse. Born and bred at Calumet Farm in Lexington, Kentucky, Alydar’s birth marked the hope of restoring this farm to its initial racing prominence, something lost over the years. Trainer John Veitch and groomer Clyde Sparks were two major people who influenced Alydar’s upbringing and eventual horse racing career. Alydar went on to make it to the Triple Crown, although he lost, placing a very close second to the horse Affirmed, in all races. After Alydar’s retirement, he was put into breeding.

Although the background above may sound normal, Alydar’s situation was anything but that. With Calumet Farm taken over by a corrupt manager, Alydar’s health and well-being were abused and sacrificed disgustingly for the sake of money. A story you must read to truly take in, I found myself hurting on the behalf of this horse’s abuse and mistreatment.

Then, of course, the mysterious night of November 13 arrives and this racehorse insured for $36.5 million is found with a broken rear leg, despite a watchman making rounds. Unfortunately, Alydar does not survive the veterinarians’ attempts to save him and an investigation ensues on what could have caused Alydar’s death. Although it is claimed that Alydar broke his leg kicking in his stall door, the evidence does not lead to this as the true case. Only after millions in insurance money are collected do the real facts of this night come into the light—and the clues suggest that Alydar could not have done it. So, if this is indeed the case, who did injure Alydar, and furthermore, what was their motive?

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book. As a lover of true story events, this book had me fascinated and captivated by this fateful night and its aftermath. I also have to compliment Kray’s extensive and thorough research; he truly left no stone unturned and no detail left from this story. This further helped support his argument about the possibilities of what happened to Alydar and most definitely convinced me of his case. As a whole, I think any reader who enjoys true stories, horses, sports, or crime would like this book.

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Author Fred M. Kray
Star Count 4/5
Format Hard
Page Count 372 pages
Publisher Live Oak Press
Publish Date 02-May-2023
ISBN 9798987213803 Buy this Book
Issue May 2023
Category Sports & Outdoors


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