Author(s): Geoff Armstrong
The thrilling, mysterious and tragic story of how a horse became a hero of his time and an icon of a nation. In 1929, Phar Lap was a gangly gelding born and bought cheaply in New Zealand, rejected by his American owner and trained by an Aussie battler who could hardly feed his family yet agreed to feed the horse. His best mate was Tommy Woodcock, a young horseman who himself became a racing folk hero. Today, a strong case can be put that Phar Lap was the best there ever was; certainly, there has never been a champion who so consistently and clinically made hacks of all his rivals. First released as an illustrated hardback, this is the most complete account of Phar Lap's life every published. It explores the many mysteries of his career, including the infamous shooting that occurred just days before his great triumph in the 1930 Melbourne Cup. It brings to life the characters of the racetrack and provides the definitive analysis of his previously unexplained death in North America. Most of all, it explains why Phar Lap is so much more than simply a racehorse.
Geoff Armstrong is the author of "A Century of Summers" and the coauthor of "The People s Game" and "Whiticisms." Peter Thompson is a sports commentator and writer for "Age," "Financial Review," and "Business Review Weekly.""