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Now in paperback, reporter Elizabeth Mitchell introduces her readers to the mysterious, mercurial world of horse racing in a book that's as fast-paced and colorful as a day at the track. Focusing on the 1999 Derby winner Charismatic, Mitchell traces this horse's amazing and ultimately tragic story, from the birth of a foal through its surprising rise to fame. Mitchell alsoNow in paperback, reporter Elizabeth Mitchell introduces her readers to the mysterious, mercurial world of horse racing in a book that's as fast-paced and colorful as a day at the track. Focusing on the 1999 Derby winner Charismatic, Mitchell traces this horse's amazing and ultimately tragic story, from the birth of a foal through its surprising rise to fame. Mitchell also follows the major players in Charismatic's life, including the family who bred him, the trainer, the owners, and the famed jockey Chris Antley, whose own story is more tragic than that of his horse. Through these interlocking stories a sense of familiarity with the key players in the industry evolves, as well as a greater understanding of the heart and soul of a sport that has fascinated human beings for centuries....

Title : Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780786886227
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 416 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing Reviews

  • Kylie Wellington
    2018-10-21 11:21

    It was 1997 and Bob Lewis had recently suffered his horse’s loss in the 1997 Belmont Stakes. If he had won, Bob would have been known as the owner of the first winner of the Triple Crown in almost 20 years. While dealing with his loss, a colt catches his attention. Bob buys the son of Summer Squall for $200,000, who is later named Charismatic. Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing tells the incredible story of how Charismatic, the underdog and longshot, became the first claimer to win the Kentucky Derby, with the help of his superstitious and extremely talented jockey, the late Chris Antley. I am giving this book three out of five stars for more reasons than one. One reason being, in Three Strides Before the Wire, the history of horse racing and betting is discussed in a very detailed manner. This book is comparable to Secretariat by William Nack, but I found Elizabeth Mitchell to often stray away from the main story into irrelevant stories. At points, I found myself skipping through parts of some chapters because they didn’t pertain to the main point and were equally boring and confusing. Mitchell focused on the history of horse racing and gambling more than Charismatic himself. One of the best aspects of Three Strides Before the Wire is the immense amount of quotes and dialogue, including a large index at the back of the book. Unlike many other nonfiction books about horse racing, most of this book wasn’t summarized information from a source, but instead direct quotes. The index at the end is very useful for readers who find an interesting article and want to read more about it. Another reason I’m giving Elizabeth Mitchell only three stars is the book wasn’t completely about Charismatic and his connections, as it was set up to be. There were many stories about Charismatic’s owners, breeders, jockey, and trainer which were great, but Mitchell put stories of her own life in it. While the stories of Mitchell’s life were equally great, Three Strides Before the Wire is set up to be a biography about Charismatic. The book would have at least received four stars from me if the author had kept to the original storyline. Overall, Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing is an O.K. book. I learned a lot about horse racing and Charismatic’s heartfelt race for the Triple Crown, but Elizabeth Mitchell needs to work on keeping the book relevant. I recommend it to anyone looking to expand their knowledge on horse racing and, more specifically, Charismatic.

  • Robert Beveridge
    2018-10-10 19:26

    Elizabeth Mitchell, Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing (Hyperion, 2002)No less a personage than Tom Wolfe proclaims on the back cover of this book that Elizabeth Mitchell is the perfect person to tell the story of the meteoric rise of a no-name colt called Charismatic in 1999 from the claiming ranks to missing the Triple Crown by a fractured sesamoid a few feet before the finish line of the Belmont Stakes. Which may well be true. It is unfortunate, however, that the result comes off as an unsuccessful mating between the recent literary smash Seabiscuit: The Making of a Legend and the much less-known and much finer Bill Barich book Laughing in the Hills, which remains to this day the finest racing book ever published.This is not to knock Mitchell's work. She takes the same basic tack Hillenbrand did in Seabiscuit, using each chapter to focus on a specific connection: the jockey, the owners, the trainer, the horse, tracing the history of each as they got closer to Derby Day 1999, and then combining them all to go through the Triple Crown. Where she crosses into Barich territory is in the addition of personal experience, and her own story as it intermeshed with that of Charismatic's connections. These sections didn't ring quite right, for reasons unknown. There are also a number of factual errors therein; most wouldn't be caught by non-racing fans, but there are a few that glare (in one particularly nasty one, jerry Bailey is on a horse as that horse loads into the gate, and around the far turn, said horse is being ridden by Gary Stevens. Not the same guy, even if all jocks look alike to you).Better to start with Hillenbrand and Barich, and come to this afterwards. ** ½

  • Joell
    2018-10-16 19:13

    So Ms. Mitchell has written a book that connects her own personal love and tragedy story and intertwined it with a love/tragedy story of a lazy but strong racehorse, a jockey with a self destruction gene, a grumpy uber-successful trainer who is never satisfied and owners with a midas touch and a lovely outlook on life. I have a tangental but highly personal connection to the horse and so I read it with that in mind. The author is mostly a newbie to the sport and get gets several facts downright wrong, but she's told the story with care and skill. She does a great job of capturing the camaraderie of the jockeys who compete against each other all day in a sport that mangles most and kills some, and then golf together and play with each other's kids. She managed to keep her far right politics out of the pages and I admire her for it. The last 60 pages or so fall apart as the horse disappears from the story - but up until then, she does a nice of keeping the story going while painting a picture of racetrack life.

  • Jay
    2018-10-09 15:02

    Along the lines of Seabiscuit, detailing the horse (Charismatic) as well as the jockey (Chris Antley), owner (the Lewis's), breeder, and trainer (D.Wayne Lukas). But this one goes beyond in a number of ways. The auxilliary folks described are numerous and often well fleshed out, including jockeys agents, starters, and relatives. There are also a couple chapters detailing gambling and racing history -- but I thought these extraneous to the story and unneeded. There is also a personal story, which I initially didn't like since it seemed so remote to the story, but Mitchell weaves these stories together expertly by the end of the book. The book ends up being not about the horse, but about the jockey. And everyone, including the horse, are the worse for the wear at the conclusion. Enjoyed the story.

  • Serena Jade
    2018-10-18 11:14

    Three Strides Before the Wire is researched well but lacks passion. The editors should have omitted the chapter on the history of gambling as it took away from the story. On page 320, there is a very important paragraph into the mind of Chris Antley-There was a fate thing going on in his mind that was deeper than most people have. He would almost laugh at you about his predictions and say, “Someday you will understand." Someday is now! "Chris Antley has to be remembered as a person who was intuitively and spiritually astute (a man ahead of his time), and as one of the greatest jockeys who graced the world of horse racing."-Excerpt from CHARISMATIC CONNECTION: THE AUTHENTIC UNCOMMON AND ENLIGHTENING SOUL MATE EXPERIENCE by Author Serena Jade

  • Kim
    2018-10-04 12:02

    The stories and insights about Charismatic, Mr. Antley and Mr. Lucas were the best things about this book. At certainpoints, the indepth history of the people and tracks during the centuries were a bit much. I found myself skipping through those pages. While I understand why Ms Mitchell told the story of her and Chuck, I found myself skimming those pages too. I wanted to know more anout the horse and jockey, not her.

  • Rae
    2018-10-15 15:05

    The dark side includes pedigree breeding, jockey lifestyles, horse injuries and gambling addictions. The beautiful is everything else. A good portion of this book tells the story of jockey Chris Antley and his three Crown races on Charismatic (the last ending the horse's career with two shattered leg bones). I enjoyed this a lot.

  • Tom Jolly
    2018-10-14 11:23

    A remarkable story, even if you think you know the details of the Triple Crown races of 1999. Charistmatic's story is fascinating as is jockey Chris Antley's but what makes this book all the more captivating is how Elizabeth Mitchell's own story dovetails with everything. For an added bonus, there's a nice history of racing and of gambling. I highly recommend this book.

  • M.A. Hodgkin
    2018-09-27 19:06

    A great account of the tragic jockey Chris Antley's quest for the Triple Crown aboard Charismatic. A good read for someone interested in learning about the world of horse-racing.

  • Amanda Roach
    2018-09-22 18:20

    This book is about my family & our adventure-journey with Charismatic during his bid for the Triple Crown.

  • Brendan
    2018-09-30 15:11

    this is the story of Amanda's family and their horse, Charismatic!

  • Amanda Roach
    2018-10-15 17:22

    This book is about my family & our adventure-journey with Charismatic during his bid for the Triple Crown.