Certain questions are often asked during tours. “How long does a Thoroughbred live?” “Do only male horses race?” and “What do your horses eat?” are frequent. One of my favorites is, “At age do Thoroughbreds start racing, and how long do they race?” That’s a great question because its answer depends on a horse’s sex and skill level, and on individual owners’ philosophies, and the differing answers reflect the complex and quirky mixture of sport and business that is racing.
Another of my favorite often-asked’s is, “Doesn’t Old Friends have a descendant of Secretariat?” Now comes the part I love. Anywhere on the farm, you can turn a slow circle and point out several horses whose ancestors include the great 1973 Triple Crown winner. People tend to be surprised at how many, and it’s wonderful watching how awareness of this connection brings Secretariat’s many fans closer to these horses as a new sense of history and continuity is gained.
So, I thought it might be fun to share here the identities of some of our most frequently visited Secretariat descendants, those on or near the main tour routes. If you’re into the nitty-gritty, below each horse are his or her lines (blue = stallion, pink = mare) tracing back to the great Secretariat.
Afternoon Deelites – great-grandson
Intimate Girl < Medaille d’Or < Secretariat
Danthebluegrassman – great-grandson
Pioneering < Terlingua < Secretariat
Eldaafer – great-grandson and great-great-great-grandson
A. P. Indy < Weekend Surprise < Secretariat
Habibti < Tabasco Cat < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
Nobiz Like Shobiz – great-great-grandson
Nightstorm < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
Popcorn Deelites – great-great-grandson
Afternoon Deelites < Intimate Girl < Medaille d’Or < Secretariat
Rapid Redux – great-great-grandson
Thiscatsforcaryl < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
River Squall – great-grandson
Summer Squall < Weekend Surprise < Secretariat
Sun King – great-great-grandson –
Charismatic < Summer Squall < Weekend Surprise < Secretariat
On any regular tour you’re likely to see four or five of the above, though please note that horses may be moved to a different paddock at any time, and that any horse’s availability for visits on any given day depends many factors contributing to the horse’s care and welbeing. But if you request to see one of these horses, your tour guide will do her or his best.
We have more Secretariat descendants and they like to meet and greet their fans, too. Though it’s not logistically possible to take regular tours to the far parts of the farm, you Secretariat fans are still in luck. Call and ask us about booking a private tour to meet horses like:
Elusive Honey – great-great-granddaughter
Elusive Quality < Gone West < Secrettame < Secretariat
Johannesburg Smile – great-great-great-grandson
Johannesburg < Hennessy < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
Lubash – great-great-grandson
Freud < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
Smooth Air – great-great-great-grandson
Smooth Jazz < Storm Boot < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
Sokitumi Samurai – great-great-great-grandson
First Samurai < Giant’s Causeway < Storm Cat < Terlingua < Secretariat
These horses aren’t all that far from the front of the farm, and still others live a bit farther off the usual visitors’ path, including Riva Way, son of Secretariat’s son Tinners Way, and A. P. Valentine, who has the same sire and relationship to Secretariat as Eldaafer. Your private tour guide will be delighted oblige if possible. And there are other wonderful horses – with and without fancy pedigrees – to meet along the way.
Photos by Laura