So what happened exactly?
It seems that the Torre horse developed a cramp midway in the race and you can actually see him laying on the track as Giraffa comes around the final bend for the win. I didn’t even see this as I was so focused on the horses that were actually running, and was watching Lo Specialista with great interest!
As they rounded the dreaded San Martino curve it does indeed seem that Lo Specialista was the first horse to go down. I saw his left hind leg fly out just as he rounded the bend.
Apparently four horses actually ended up falling at this corner and two were far enough behind the pile up to avoid getting in the fray, but of course the race was over for all but the first three horses that managed to navigate the curve safely.
The final ranking: Giraffa, Leocorno, Nicchio.
Everyone and all the horses are okay!!!
Attached is a great YouTube video of the August 16, 2011 Palio.