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Dec. 11: Engineering Students Celebrate Horsepower


Chriss Swaney

Carnegie Mellon Engineering Students Celebrate Horsepower
By Sending Holiday Get-Well Card to Injured Derby Winner

PITTSBURGH—A handful of Carnegie Mellon University mechanical engineering students have created an edible get-well card for famed Kentucky Derby champ Barbaro, who shattered his right hind leg in the Preakness Stakes, the second race of the Triple Crown, earlier this year.      

The students have created a card shaped like a horseshoe and plan to complete decorating the card with carrots, apples and sugar cubes at noon, Dec. 12 in the mechanical engineering lab, C-106, at Hamerschlag Hall off Frew Street.      

"We thought this was a great project for students in our engine class, where we study things like horsepower and all the important engineered parts that make things run," said John Wiss, an adjunct professor in mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon. "There's a lot of horsepower behind the graceful movement of a thoroughbred racehorse, who may carry nearly 1,300 pounds of horse and rider at 40 miles an hour," Wiss said. Before the injury, the dark-bay colt had career winnings of more than $2.3 million.     

Wiss said the famed racehorse has been improving since his cast was removed Nov. 4 at the University of Pennsylvania's George D. Widener Hospital for Large Animals in suburban Kennett Square, Pa.