Sunday, August 14, 2011

Secretariat & My Bailey

Time freezes when Secretariat comes on TV. I stop everything I am doing and watch and watch and get goosebumps all over again. The story of a horse that did so much for a woman is extraordinary to say the least. Penney Tweedy fought for what was right, she choose to not live her life with what if's or what could be. She taught so many of us lessons we needed to learn, back in the 70's women in any type of male dominated industry were looked down upon and belittled, but Penney kept her head held high and knew her horse was the one that could get the job done.  I was not even born when Secretariat won the Triple Crown, he won it on June 9, 1973 I was born a month later on July 2nd, but through my life I heard a lot about this big red champion that was called the Super Horse of racing. He was big, red, and beautiful. He did strange things that set him apart from other horses. He also had the heart of a champion that was three times the normal size of a race horse heart. This extra large heart is what allowed him to move as fast as he did, it pumped blood three times faster through his body. This heart gene also passed to his offspring, but genetic testing has shown that it mostly past to the fillies he sired and not the colts, but it is possible? Anything is possible..
I have been blessed with horses most of my life. With the companionship of them and all of their characteristics they have. Each horse has its own personality just as we people do. Among the horses I have owned is one so very special, Bailey. Bailey has a registered name of Majestic Secret, you can probably guess that the Secret in his name is from that Big Red Champion named Secretariat. Bailey is a Grandson of the famous race horse and some days he looks just like him from the pictures I've seen. I was lucky enough to be an email friend with James Gaffney back when I first got Bailey in 1997 and James even sent me a few photos of him on Big Red and also of Big Red winning races. These are priceless photos to me, they are a part of history and remain in my book of registration papers with Bailey's papers. 

Word of a Grandson of Secretariat sitting right in the suburbs of Buffalo, NY spread like wild fire and I was approached by WGRZ Channel 2's Stu Boyer to do a story on him. I put it off and put it off until one year right before the Triple Crown races were to start I let them come out and film Bailey for a news segment. Needless to say it was a funny experience. We put Bailey out into a round pen and let him strut his stuff, which he indeed did for the camera man, but of course being a sports camera man he was asked to film inside the pen while Bailey was running around, the camera man kept asking "do I get hazard pay" This really cracked me up, this was a horse that wasn't going to hurt anyone he was just out there running around and playing... but the camera man did indeed get in that pen with him and tape him. I do have the whole video on tape and have yet to get it converted onto a DVD, one day I will.

Back to Secretariat - at the time of war the country needed an idol to follow and they followed Big Red. From race to race and venue to venue he had a following. To this day he still holds the fastest times for the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont. His margin of victory has never been approached in the Belmont Stakes, even to this day. This was a horse that helped a woman save her farm and her family and brought love and adoration to all that met him. Penney Tweedy showed us that you should never give up, never have regrets, and if you put your heart into it you will succeed. She believed in Secretariat when no one else did. I have so much respect for Penney Tweedy on so many levels. Her Daughter even helped write a book called "Secretariat's Meadow" and Bailey was even featured on their website as a descendant of the great Secretariat!

I feel a sense of pride knowing that I own a descendant of Secretariat, not just any descendant but a Grandson with Secretariat listed right on his registration papers. History that now Disney has brought back to life with their movie. Disney did an amazingly awesome job portraying the story of a horse and his owner. From the articles I read the movie is pretty much dead on with how things really happened in the life of Secretariat being born up until his winning the Triple Crown.  Thank you Disney for bring this story to the big screen for everyone to enjoy! Thank You Penney for giving your blessing on the movie.

To prove that yes indeed my Bailey is a Grandson of the Big Red Champion known as Secretariat I've scanned his registration papers. See Bailey is a registered Quarter Horse and not a Thoroughbred like Secretariat was. The American Quarter Horse Assoc let's you breed a bull blood QH to a TB and allows that baby to be registered as an Appendix QH, which is what Bailey is.. that is why his papers are yellow he is in a special registration, but is still eligible to show and earn AQHA points.

We should all live with the heart of a champion and we should all never give up in what you believe in. Keep your head held high and keep on moving and you can obtain your dreams! 

More on Majestic Secret aka "BAILEY" can be seen on his website at Majestic Secret AQHA Stallion

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