"Six Weeks in Saratoga" available! Go get it!

"Six Weeks in Saratoga: How Three-Year-Old Rachel Alexandra Beat the Boys and Became Horse of the Year" published July 1, 2011. Keep it locked here, at The Carryover or go to SUNY Press to order your copy ... right now! Or head on down to your favorite bookseller.

Praise for "Six Weeks in Saratoga"

“Going behind the scenes of three-year-old filly Rachel Alexandra’s 2009 triumph … O’Meara makes her story gallop and gleam.” — Chronogram

“The [book] is one of enjoyable promise, and as the author recounts little moments and inside conversations, he provides an intimate glimpse into the lives of the figures he covers. The narrative keeps game pace with outside literary standards and features bursts of brilliance, and I found it a refreshing change from the selection of racing-themed volumes available today. As O’Meara brings his subjects to life, you find yourself thinking this is the kind of guy whose work I want to follow.” — Claire Novak, ESPN.com

“O’Meara … provide[s] a tremendous amount of detail from behind the scenes that the reader would not have otherwise enjoyed … Six Weeks is essentially a Rachel book, but it’s told without neglecting the always rich backdrop of a Saratoga meet. That means there’s history, surprises, characters (human and equine), great racing, foggy mornings and sun-splashed afternoons—plenty of material through which O’Meara could exercise his descriptive abilities.” — Schenectady Daily Gazette

“O’Meara fell for a magical place and magnificent horse, which is a lovely malady that often befalls horse people, and with a great deal of heart he tells us how and why. You’ll never forget his Six Weeks in Saratoga, either.” — Joe Drape, author of Our Boys: A Perfect Season on the Plains with the Smith Center Redmen

“Brendan O’Meara tells the story of this proud horse with verve and great historical insight. Six Weeks in Saratoga marks the debut of an exciting new talent.” — Wil Haygood, author of Sweet Thunder: The Life and Times of Sugar Ray Robinson

“Brendan O’Meara’s Six Weeks in Saratoga is a victory to be savored by those who treasure good writing in general and tales of the track in particular. Horses may win races, but they also win hearts as this impressive book proves beyond doubt. A memorable, sure-footed debut.” — Madeleine Blais, author of In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Fishy business

Yesterday, after Mine That Bird had an inspiring workout in preparation for the Travers, trainer Chip Woolley had his Derby winner scoped.

Things looked good. The surgery was a success. He didn't aggravate it while exerting himself.

But what struck me as odd was that owner Mark Allen, looking like his motorcycle got a flat tire, loomed over the "press conference." Next, Woolley said that they planned on scoping him AGAIN the following day and that if anything went awry they would not enter him.

Scoping on back-to-back days? Especially when he was clean as Mister? To me, this suggested that they were looking for an excuse not to run him in Saratoga, namely Mark Allen was looking for an excuse to skip the Travers.

Mine That Bird apparently lost 50-60 pounds following his third-place finish in the West Virginia Derby. He has since at Saratoga and put the weight back on. He was training well and his mood and attitude were sharp and attentive.

It's too bad. He was pointed to this race at a distance he should relish. He is the only horse to win a race at 10 furlongs. The race will still be great with Charitable Man, Hold Me Back, Kensei, Quality Road, Our Edge, Summer Bird and Warrior's Reward. But without the Derby winner, the Travers now seems like tarnished silver or a dull steak knife.

The protocol surrounding his absence from the entry box was fishy and the result was crushing.


Anonymous said...

Rachel Alexandra
Mine That Bird
Summer Bird
Quality Road
I Want Revenge
Pioneerof the Nile
Musket Man
Flying Private
Luv Guv
Nowhere to Hide
Undisclosed Neil Howard horse who wins allowance at Saratoga (Grasshopper, Mambo in Seattle)

This was your dream list for the Travers. Who would have thought only two from this list would actually race? Who would have predicted it would have been Quality Road and Summer Bird?

Brendan O'Meara said...

I know, right? This seems to happen every year. You can never look too far ahead with racehorses. Even looking ahead one week is dangerous apples.

Honestly, I feel good that as many as two horses from that list made it!

I Want Revenge is likely done. Nile was retired. Musket Man got hurt. Nowhere to Hide can't win an allowance race. Funny how this works.

Anonymous said...

6 Weeks in Saratoga will be the first horse racing book I have ever bought!

And the first book I have ever read...