Headless Horsemen by Jim Squires
A Tale of Chemical Colts, Subprime Sales Agents, and the Last Kentucky Derby on Steroids

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A pointed and irreverent critique of thoroughbred racing’s breakdown, by a prominent journalist turned horse breeder

Jim Squires was in trouble. He had gone from one business seemingly intent on committing suicide to another, both led over the cliff by visionless leaders. First it was the newspaper bean-counters’ blind adherence to the demands of Wall Street. Then in horse racing it was a clannish group called “the Dinnies” refusing to share power and unable to see that vast overproduction and unbridled greed had created a subprime-like bubble in the market. Overpriced animals of dubious quality and drug-enhanced performance on the track were undermining the integrity of competition and ultimately the very breed itself. With its economic model broken, its tawdry sales practices under attack, and its public image in tatters after a series of televised fatal breakdowns by horses in famous races, the sport was overdue for a reckoning.

Headless Horsemen is Squires’s comic but poignant critique of what is happening to the sport and the animals he loves, as he and a small group of unlikely heroes agitate for a return to fair dealing. For anyone who cares about the soul and survival of horse racing, this book is an impassioned call to arms.


About Jim Squires

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Jim Squires has been breeding and raising horses in Kentucky since 1990, following a career in journalism that culminated in a decade as editor of the Chicago Tribune. He is the author of three previous books, including Horse of a Different Color, his account of his wild ride as the breeder of Monarchos, the winner of the 2001 Kentucky Derby. Squires lives with his wife at Two Bucks Farm in Versailles, Kentucky.
Published April 27, 2010 by St. Martin's Griffin. 272 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Sports & Outdoors, Science & Math. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Former Chicago Tribune editor and successful horseman Squires (Horse of a Different Color: A Tale of Breeding Geniuses, Dominant Females, and the Fastest Derby Winner Since Secretariat, 2002) exposes a thoroughbred horse-racing industry drowning in drug abuse and rife with unscrupulous business p...

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Headless Horsemen: A Tale of ...

Publishers Weekly

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Squires, a newspaperman–turned–horse breeder who bred 2001 Kentucky Derby winner Monarchos (chronicled in his 2003 book, Horse of a Different Color ),

Jun 01 2009 | Read Full Review of Headless Horsemen: A Tale of ...

Star Tribune

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Squires exposes the seedy side of racing, from horse-doping to kickbacks.

Aug 01 2009 | Read Full Review of Headless Horsemen: A Tale of ...

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