Desert Horses

Welcome to my horse blog, Desert Horses. We live in the desert southwest, near Palm Springs, CA, but board our horses up in our local mountains where it is cooler in the summer. I have 4 horses, all rescues. Here is the ranch up the mountains where the horses stay.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Memories of Secretariat

I saw Secretariat's three Triple Crown Races on TV, back in 1973. I'd been married for a year and at that time and hubby and I lived in Riverside, CA, which was an hour away from my family. We were both still in school, working on our BA's. We had a tiny apartment, but we frequently traveled to the suburbs of Los Angeles, where my parents, grandparents, and aunt still lived. I'd grown up in a horse-racing family. My great-uncle was a trainer with a small barn at Santa Anita, Hollywood Park, and Del Mar. I was able to frequently visit his horses. I remember how tall they were! My grandfather and I used to sneak over to Santa Anita after school and place a few bets! Hehehehehehe!!!! I LOVED thoroughbreds and vowed I would someday do whatever I could to save them. I now have 2, Quad and Gigondas. Quad is a OTTB, and he is a descendant of Secretariat. He ran in 7 races and never won a race, however. He was sent to a throughbred rescue, TB Friends. I have not been able to find any information about Gigondas, although another gal said she looks like the foal of a mare that she has. But, I haven't been able to confirm that. She doesn't have a lip tattoo. Anyway, so hubby and I drove to my grandparents' house to watch the Triple Crown races in 1973. And, Secretariat's Belmont Stakes win was the most incredible race I'd ever seen! Hubby just sat in his chair with his mouth open! I didn't see his final race, however, but kept track of "Big Red" as best I could, between study sessions at UC Riverside. I regret that I never saw Lady's Secret run at Santa Anita, since that would have been an easy drive for me. But, over the years, I have spotted Secretariat's descendants and I've watched them race. Like so many others, I was dismayed to hear of his death on October 4, 1989. I just couldn't believe it! I read his biography, by William Mack, and I'm anxious to see the movie. Are you going to see it? Please take the poll, if you can! I'm pleased that his memory lives on. He truly was a magnificent horse!


Anonymous said...

I saw all his races, too, on TV. But you may not know this (although maybe you do as I blab about it all the time and consider it one of my life highlights - I'll probably be blabbing about it on my deathbed!) - I actually got to meet Secretariat in the spring of 1989 at Claiborne Farms. And what's more, they brought him out of the pasture so we could see him up close - and I GOT TO TOUCH HIM! He was such a kind, sweet horse - I was able to stand right next to him - he was as big in person as he looks in the photos - and stroke him on the neck and shoulder. I was greatly saddened to hear of his death that fall.

I was pregnant with my older daughter at the time and she says that's why she's so "horsey"!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

When I went to the movies the other day, the entire theater was decorated to celebrate Secretariat. My husband and I went to UCR too!

Linda said...

I'm absolutely going to see it. Some of my horse friends are getting a lady's movie night together.

JennyB said...

One of my horses, Brother, is a descendant of Secretariat too so our horses are relatives =D It makes me proud that though Secretariat is gone his blood lives on.

~~JennyB, Horsefeathers

photogchic said...

So amazing that you got to see him run...envy! I am really looking forward to seeing the movie this weekend. I come from a racing family as well, it is hard to get it out of your blood. There are some really great clips of him on Youtube...what a wonderful horse.