11/28/2011 11:55AM

Hollywood Park: Cloud Man euthanized after suffering injuries in Hollywood Derby


INGLEWOOD, Calif. – Cloud Man had to be euthanized because of the severe injuries he suffered on Sunday in the Hollywood Derby, trainer John Shirreffs said Monday morning.

“He had multiple fractures of his pastern, and there was no way to put it back together without pain and, eventually, founder,” Shirreffs said. “The most humane thing to do when they in that condition is to do it quickly, while they are in shock. If you do it then, they are not really suffering.”

Cloud Man broke down with three furlongs to go in the 1 1/4-mile Hollywood Derby, which is run on turf. The immediate word from the track veterinarians, relayed through the stewards, was that an attempt was going to be made to save Cloud Man, but when he got back to Shirreffs’s barn and his condition was fully assessed, there was no hope.

Just two days earlier, Shirreffs was celebrating a Grade 1 win by Star Billing in the Matriarch Stakes.

“That’s the highs and lows of the game, unfortunately,” Shirreffs said. “They’re fragile, like ballerinas, and one bad step can be unforgiving.”

Cloud Man, a colt by Thunder Gulch, was bred and owned by Jerry and Ann Moss. He won twice in eight starts. He was a close fourth in the Del Mar Derby, and a fast-finishing fifth in the 14-horse Oak Tree Derby, in his two starts prior to the Hollywood Derby.