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The Eighty-Dollar Champion- Who has read it? Should I read it?

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  • The Eighty-Dollar Champion- Who has read it? Should I read it?

    I know who Frank Chapot, George Morris, and Bill Steinkraus are. How do I ot know about Henry de Leyer?

    Is this a good book?
    "I'm holding out for the $100,000 Crossrail Classic in 2012." --mem
    "With all due respect.. may I suggest you take up Croquet?" --belambi
    Proud Member of the Opinionated Redhead Club!

  • #2
    I liked it. There were parts where he describes things to the non-horse person, so I found some of those parts boring, so I just skimmed thru those to get back to the good stuff!
    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


    • #3
      Snowman was really famous when I was a kid. He embodied so much of that American dream of being able to pull yourself up by the bootstraps - coming from nothing to become famous - and for the likes of backyard kids like me he was a real inspiration. He was quite retired but his was a story that the older people liked to refer to. It's true that I never paid a whole lot of attention to Mr de Leyer in all that.

      I'd read it.
      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
      Incredible Invisible


      • #4
        A friend gave it to me and I enjoyed it. Knew nothing about the story beforehand so it was all new to me and held my interest.
        "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."


        • #5
          I liked it.



          • #6
            Definitley read it! DD gave it to me for Christmas, and I'm on the last chapter. Its a great read!
            Lowly Farm Hand with Delusions of Barn Biddieom.
            Witherun Farm


            • #7
              Its a great story, I don't normally like "horsey" books, but this was pretty interesting.


              • #8
                Yes, I recommend it.
                If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


                • #9
                  I liked it too. It's a great story about the underdog.
                  The problem with political jokes is that they get elected.
                  H. Cate


                  • #10
                    It's worth reading. I enjoyed it, too.


                    • #11
                      Great read--recommended!

                      I enjoyed it enormously, and bought several Christmas copies to give to friends. We all grew up watching many of those great horses jump in the Big Shows locally . . .

                      Most interesting part of the book for me was the historical background, which actually even led me to acquire some of the author's source materials. Even having been around the horse business all my life, certain of the social nuances I encountered as a kid suddenly became crystal-clear to me as a result of this book; notably the way ammies viewed professionals.


                      • #12
                        It's fine. I remember reading an earlier book about Snowman when I was a kid, but it was nice to be reminded about the story. It's a good read. The book does explain things for non-horse people, but it is a good read.

                        Harry de Leyer is still alive and lives in the Charlottesville area, I believe. The book benefits from the interviews that the author did.

                        And the photos -- all these huge jumps without helmets. It makes me cringe when I think how everyone rode back then. I remember as a kid "saving" my helmet for horse shows.
                        Where Fjeral Norwegian Fjords Rule


                        • #13
                          Have a different opinion. Thought she carried on too much about the haves and have-nots. Would have preferred hearing more specifics about training and the horse and each climactic competition. But that's just me...
                          But he thought, "This procession has got to go on." So he walked more proudly than ever, as his noblemen held high the train that wasn't there at all. H.C.Anderson


                          • #14
                            I loved it ... great story about how a kill pen horse ended up being a champion.


                            • #15
                              The book was okay, but if you grew up in Mr. de Leyer's neighborhood as both I & my husband did, you quickly realize that a certain amount of "literary license" was taken in the writing of this tale.


                              • #16
                                I liked it pretty well.

                                Of course, my big question isn't "Should I read this?" - it's "Do I want this book badly enough to buy it?" (But I'm a librarian - for most books, I'd rather borrow than buy!)

                                Personally, I enjoyed "Renegade Champion" (same general era, but about a less well known horse and rider team) a bit better than "The Eighty Dollar Champion".


                                • #17
                                  Enjoyed it ~ worth the read ~

                                  I enjoyed it ~ worth the read ~ IMHO ~
                                  Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


                                  • #18
                                    I was actually very disappointed in this book. I wanted to like it more because the story was interesting, but was disappointed overall. I couldn't even bring myself to finish it. The quality of writing was what really let me down, not even that the book wasn't directed at horse people. There was a general lack of details when it came to the competition scenes and lack of true familiarity with the show experience made the scenes repetitive and lacking in authenticity.

                                    Lots of better horse books out there, directed at both horse and non-horsey people.


                                    • #19
                                      I didn't like it. I thought it was poorly written. The author repeated stuff over and over and over again. She also spent way too many pages talking about stuff that had nothing whatsoever to do with horses. And, most of the horse stuff was dumbed down.
                                      "Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything
                                      that's even remotely true."

                                      Homer Simpson


                                      • #20
                                        I thought it was fantastic and I am a writing snob. It's not just a fluffy horse story. It's the story of Harry AND Snowman. It's the story of someone who didn't have disposable time or income -- all he had was a dream and a lot of very hard work in a time when dreams didn't get you very far. The horse world was and still is a world of those who have and those who don't. No one believed in Harry or Snowman, but it never mattered to either one.

                                        Harry also trained many fancy thoroughbreds for clients -- more than one was sold to the USET. He trained George Morris' mount in the 1960 Rome Olympics, Sinjon, from a hot greenie to 6' jumps. He was forced by circumstance to sell the horse as a ride for this young up and comer because he had a family to feed.
                                        Life doesn't have perfect footing.

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