to see back of hat
How to Order
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the Ruffian hat will
go to the Grayson Jockey Club and TOBA
(Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association)
book available at Exclusively Equine
As though our dreams had the force
of reality, we conceived her and then when she appeared took her
for our own. We made her on massive proportions, the body of a stud,
the legs of a water spider, so that no one would mistake her for
ordinary. And we made her black as the crack of doom. We
made her fast, speed on speed, so fast that distance would lose
all meaning and time would take on meaning anew. We endowed her
with a savagery which would drive her to fight pain and would humble
her foes like serfs at the feet of a queen. And then we gave her
to a man above whom no other could be more trusted to minister to
her greatness and to preserve the sanctity of our dream.
She gave us power because what we dreamt she performed, so we asked
for more. Track records, stakes records. Why not a world record,
a consummate feat which would prove us to be the supreme dreamers
of all? We approved when the track was tempered like an anvil, a
little help from man to fulfill her destiny.
Her speed, her unearthly physical size, our vanity and finally her
own savagery destroyed her.
We live now with a busted dream, but the man in the pink shirt
who made that lonesome trip to the far side of Belmont’s
infield a Sunday ago lives with a real loss. We will dream again,
Whiteley will never have another Ruffian
Cary Robertson Jr.
Thoroughbred Record, 1975