When I was a child I was crazed over horses.  My BF and I would constantly compare horse experiences and tales.  We kept a scrapbook of famous horse races.  During the making of the movie I heard on Disney channel that Secretariat was actually born here in VA.  This somewhat surprised me, so I vowed that if we were ever in that area—we would look it up.  Turns out, the birthplace (now a concert field) is right next to Kings Dominion!  Since we were on our way to Richmond one day, we decided to find the historical marker.  The kids are used to these signs telling of civil war events, and we really surprised to see one for a horse’s birthplace! 

The kids watched the movie (twice) on the way down.  We had looked into the life of Secretariat prior to our adventure.  Here are some fun facts:


He was the first horse to win the triple crown in 25 years.

He only raced 2 years.  He was ‘syndicated’ into an agreement where he would only race 3 years.


Naturally, after that, he enjoyed every man’s dream of retirement, where he sired over 600 foals.


Secretariat carried what was known as the ‘x-factor’ meaning his heart was much larger than that of a normal horse.  This is a genetic trait passed down from his mother.  Therefore, none of his male foals would have had this ‘x-factor’


He had to be euthanized because of laminitis, a painful hoof condition.


He was one of the rare horses who is buried full body.  Most race horses upon death are only buried with their head, hooves, and heart, and the rest of the body is cremated.


He won 16 out of the 21 races he ran. 


We enjoyed the story of Secretariat, and thought the movie seemed to follow the story of his life pretty well.  We are looking forward to our trip to Louisville, KY where we hope to see Churchill Downs...and maybe the farm he retired in—Stay tuned! 


Some sites:


Secretariat's Pedigree