Invasor’s sudden departure from racing brings to mind some interesting “what ifs” and “too bads.” What if Barbaro wasn’t injured in the Preakness – could he have beaten Invasor in the Breeders’ Cup Classic? Too bad Invasor didn’t last long enough to face Street Sense and Curlin – was he truly the “super horse” when testing his skills against the best of another generation?

Well, what makes a “super horse” is defined by all kinds of criteria. Invasor did indeed win 11 of 12 career starts and was Horse of the Year on two continents. Born in Argentina and victorious in all three Triple Crown races in Uruguay, Invasor offered the charisma of a soccer star to all South America. Owned by a sheikh from Dubai, he won, in his last horse race ever (the Dubai World Cup), on the same sandy soil that he lost his only horse race ever (the UAE Derby to Discreet Cat).

Regardless, Invasor never warmed American hearts to the extent of a horse he defeated - Bernardini. And, he had the unfortunate bad timing to race in the era of Barbaro, an icon. He didn’t run very fast. He wasn’t flashy in the same way as Secretariat. He just figured out the way to win.

Kiaran McGlaughlin said, “He’s obviously the best horse I’ll ever train.” Was he the best horse you ever saw?