Last weekend Eight Belles, the lone filly to run in the Kentucky Derby, took on 19 boys and came in second. Minutes later she broke two ankles and was euthanized on the track.
Days before the race, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, the only female in her own contest, fittingly, encouraged people to bet on the only filly.
And while horse racing and politics are two completely different sports, Clinton finds herself trailing Senator Barack Obama for the Democratic presidential nomination. After a year of solid campaigning and 47 primaries and contests, question is, is her journey coming to a close?
Still short of 2025
To win the nomination, a democratic candidate needs 2,025 delegates, made up of pledged delegates (based on wins in primaries and caucuses) and superdelegates (high-ranking Democrats who vote in the primary). Neither candidate is there yet but Obama is closer. He's also winning the popular vote:
Delegate count (different groups report different numbers):
Obama: 15,926,271 (49.6%)
Clinton: 15,215,907 (47.3%)
At this point it all comes down to the math, and most analysis says it's not in her favor. Having said that, there are 12 primaries and caucuses between now and June 3, and about 200 delegates at stake. Of the 800 superdelegates out there, several hundred have yet to commit to one candidate.
There’s also the question of what to do with Michigan and Florida and the 366 delegates between them. So far they don't count because the Democratic Party punished them for holding primaries too early. The Clinton camp wants those delegates. Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, a Clinton supporter, reportedly has pressured House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to allow a revote in both states or lose his financial contributions to the party.
The big picture
So far Clinton doesn't seem to be budging despite intensifying calls for her to drop out. “Elections can turn in a day," she says, but the math just isn't in her favor. Even if they split all the remaining delegates, she would have to win the majority of all the remaining superdelegates. And many that had committed to her are shifting support to Obama, a steam engine that seems unstoppable.