Friday, August 22, 2008
Genuine Risk, 1977-2008
On a wall in my house hangs a photo that evokes my favorite memory of Genuine Risk. Photographer Tony Leonard caught the mare in perhaps her most poignant moment, gazing backwards, lovingly at her first live foal, Genuine Reward, as he cantered alongside her in a paddock at Three Chimneys Farm.
Whenever this print catches my eye, I am reminded of how proud Genuine Risk was of this baby. I spent a lot of time with both of them, while writing a start-to-finish series of mom and foal for the Lexington Herald-Leader. The series took me to a lot of places: from Three Chimneys Farm near Midway, Ky., to the Upperville, Va., Newstead Farm of Genuine Risk’s owners, Bert and Diana Firestone, to the Middleburg Training Center, to Florida, and to the private training facility they once owned at Saratoga.
I couldn’t write enough about mom and foal. People watched the colt’s progress with great interest because they were caught up in the story of this Kentucky Derby-winning filly who finally had a foal after 11 years of trying.
“We’ve had 50 or 60 calls a day, mostly from non-horse people,” Dan Rosenberg, then general manager of Three Chimneys, said at the time. Genuine Risk received cards, letters, phone calls, gifts, and flowers. Rosenberg told the Herald-Leader how the farm had “heard from women who’ve had difficulty in maintaining a pregnancy, or who had children late in life. We didn’t anticipate such an emotional response from so many people.”
Continue Reading Genuine Risk ....
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