Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year 2009.
A vivid portrait of the Sport of Kings. It tells the fascinating story of a champion racehorse and the era in which he raced. His influence is such that, 200 years later, ninety-five per cent of horses racing today are his male-line descendants.
Epsom Downs, 3rd May, 1769: a chestnut with a white blaze scorches across the turf towards the finishing post. His four rivals are so far behind him that, in racing terms, they are 'nowhere'. Awestruck, his spectators know they are in the presence of greatness.
Among the crowd are two men who, according to the tradition of the Sport of Kings, should not be associated with the horse who will become its greatest exponent. One, Eclipse's owner, is a meat salesman. The second, who wants to own Eclipse, is an adventurer who has made his money through roguery and gambling. He is also the companion of the madam of one of London's most notorious brothels.
While this man will remain an outcast to the racing establishment, Eclipse will go on to become the undisputed, undefeated champion of his sport. He will found dynasties that will dominate the bloodstock market - not only in Britain, but in every other country where Thoroughbreds race. His influence will be such that ninety-five per cent of horses racing today are his male-line descendants.
This is a vivid portrait of high and low life; of princes, paupers and prostitutes; an era of passionate sport, ferocious gambling, and uninhibited sex. It's the story of a rank outsider who went on to become a national celebrity; and of the horse that became a national icon, and whose influence is transcendent 200 years later.
"A compelling and brilliantly researched reflection of the era which featured one of racing's most renowned equine heroes -- Eclipse" SIR PETER O'SULLEVAN
"Nicholas Clee has taken one of the greatest of all racing stories and brought it wonderfully back to life" BROUGH SCOTT
Publication date: 12/03/2009
Publisher: Bantam Press an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd
|Publication date:||12th March 2009|
|Publisher:||Bantam Press an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Sport,|
Nicholas Clee is a journalist, cookery writer, and racing enthusiast. He lives in north London with his wife (also an author) and two daughters.More About Nicholas Clee