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The Horse Whispering
Rick Reilly
June 08, 1998
So I was walking home from that new Robert Redford movie when I heard somebody in the alley go, "Hey, buddy."
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June 08, 1998

The Horse Whispering

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Point made.

"I mean, this guy Andrew Beyer of The Washington Post went so far as to write, 'If a horse of this quality sweeps the Triple Crown, then the Triple Crown is diminished.' "

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"Does this geek have any idea how hard it is to win one, forget all three? I mean, you got some midget Joan Crawford beating on you, and you got more pounds thundering next to you than an 80-percent-off sale at Big and Beautiful, and you win anyway, and then some sniff like Beyer says you're diminishing the Triple Crown?"

Horsepuck?

"Exactly. Hey, I don't have blinders on here. You know why these guys are sweating me? It's because they didn't pick me to win! Beyer didn't pick me to win the Derby or even the Preakness until Coronado's Quest broke down. I made him look stupid! He's got this number system everybody's supposed to buy. Well, if the Beyer Speed Figures are so freaking swift, how come he's still writing?"

Listen—

"It's not just the writers. The racing crowd is smacking me because they don't like the guys I run with. My owner, Mike Pegram, the guy that owns all the McDonalds? He's not exactly their type because he didn't come to his money the way they did—out of the birth canal. He had to work for his. Racing wants people who eat arugula and speak fluent trust fund.

"My trainer, Bob Baffert, with the mop of white hair, he's not one of them, either. He shows up at the barn at 8:30 instead of 5 a.m., and it bugs 'em because he's become the best trainer in racing.

"All of us are kinda outcasts, and that's why, even though I'm right on the doorstep of the Triple Crown, people act like I oughta be in the circus."

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