Though Fast Market toiled in relative obscurity on the racetracks of Canada and the U.S., logging 144 starts with not much to show, the oldest living son of Secretariat was never forgotten by those who knew him in his heyday, not even after 25 years.
The bright chestnut gelding with four white feet, once famous for bucking off riders, and the inevitable “loose horse!” announcement that followed, has recently come blasting back into the life of his erstwhile jockey. A horse so loved that when the old jock saw the picture of a horse he assumed had perished long ago, he went diving for his phone and into the past.
Barn name: Markie
Dam: That’s Ten, by Cyane
Foal date: Feb. 4, 1986
Starts: 144Eldridge Lindsey saw the photo of the feisty gelding he rode in the early 1990s on Facebook two months ago, when a birthday announcement came with happy news that the 29-year-old gelding was alive and very well indeed. Immediately recognizing his long-lost friend, Lindsey tracked down the phone number for the gelding’s retirement home and made plans to reunite with the horse.
Beverlee Dee, executive director of Bright Futures Farm in Pennsylvania, where Fast Market lives, says she was astonished to learn that the quirky gelding she has owned since 2006 was so adored, and was such a handful in his heyday. And that after all these years his memory still burns bright.
“Getting that phone call was a wow-moment for me,” says Dee. “To think someone who never heard of us before took the time to find our phone number and make the call about a horse who obviously touched him … that spoke volumes to me about how much Markie had an impact on him.”
By the time horse and rider first met, Fast Market already had something of a reputation on the track, Dee says. Known to dump his riders when it pleased him, Markie was happily running loose at the track on the very day young Lindsey happened to stop by. The young jockey was asked to go fetch the horse, and soon after, the pair became friends, Dee says.
Lindsey started riding Markie in the races, and after work, would sneak the hungry horse all manner of junk food, including jerk chicken and doughnuts!
Though Markie can’t eat at age 29 like he did as a kid—it’s mostly senior feed, carrots and peppermints for him now— he still has spunk. Once a racehorse known to lie down on the track with his rider in the saddle, he’s advanced to tail pulling of his herd mates, and a truly spectacular run-drop-roll display at dinner, Dee says.
“He likes to bite the tails of other horses and hold on. They can walk away, but he’ll just follow, still holding on! It’s his game,” she says. “And, he always has a roll before dinner. When he comes out of the pasture, he takes off in that sideways racehorse lope with his head and body twisted to the left; then does almost a sliding stop, drops and rolls. He does this every night.”
If racing riches were made on personality and not speed, Fast Market would have rivaled Secretariat.
“I think most people who have never met Fast Market fall in love with him because of who his sire was,” Dee says. “People who have met him love him because of his quirky personality.”
37 responses to “Oldest Secretariat son to reunite with jockey”
Just to add to the story i had the privlage of grooming him as a 3 year old race markie was a handfull back then. Love your story
I had the honor of meeting Fast Market(Markie). He was everything I expected and more. Holding his lead was an honor. Markies dad and I share the same birthday(I am 7 yes his senior).
Wow 144 starts – Marky is a horse with a huge heart.
Do you allow people to come see him. If so where are you located in Pa.
I love anyone and anything connected to Secretariat. He and I were born the same year. How I so wish that I could have seen him in person. What a wonderful story, and I can’t wait for the follow-up after the reunion.
Fabulous story! 🙂
I saw a those Triple Crown races and fell in love with Secretariat. I have owned 2 OTTB’s- both chestnuts! A friend of mine owns a grandson – Eastern Salute. They are in Old Forge, NY. When the movie appeared in the local theater, they trailered Esau down so the folks could meet his grandson. Love reading these stories.
I have the great honor of helping to take care of Markie. He is an absolutely wonderful being! I volunteer at Bright Futures, though not as often as I would like! Markie is a character alright, he does love the head bob and sway. He has almost given me a concussion with how exuberant he gets. But it is always in fun & happiness, he doesn’t have a mean bone in his body. Maybe a stubborn bone but never a mean bone! He can also be very gentle and loving. There have been a couple of occasions where I have been rubbing his neck, standing in front of him, and he will put his head on my shoulder and almost fall asleep! He is treasure, as all of the horses at Brigh Futures!
Hello Susan, As always, I enjoy reading your stories, specially if they have anything to do with Secretariat and his blood line. I still have good intentions one day of making the trip to see and meet everyone. In the mean time I will always appreciate and enjoy reading your great stories. Thanks so much for sharing these stories with us. Take care and stay safe and that goes for everyone there.
I had the pleasure of working with 3 Secretariat daughters when they were broodmares. Those girls had personality plus also. Like the privileged kids of human celebrities they seem to know Daddy’s name gets them some leeway. And yes I guess it does.
Fast Market sounds like quite a character. I am so glad that Beverlee Dee has given him a loving forever home. Thank you Susan, I loved this story.
this so brings a tear to my eye will you have any pictures of the jockey and him together again?
Mandy: They have not reunited yet, but expect to do so this summer.
What a great story. It’s wonderful knowing his jockey still cares for him. I bet there are a lot of similar stories out there. Say what you want about racing, there are more of these stories around than we hear.
I’VE ALWAYS LOVED SECRETARIAT AND HEARING ABOUT HIS SONS AND GRANDSONS. THEY ARE MY HEROES!!!!! DID SECRETARIAT HAVE ANY GRANDDAUGHTERS?
He is a character for sure! He loves nodding his head to get what he wants! funny boy!
Susan, great story! We love hearing about Secretariat’s descendants and are sharing this on our Secretariat’s Meadow Facebook page!
Love the story and hats off to his jockey! Can’t wait to hear more. I was astonished how much my 8 YO distant grandson of Secretariat looks like Markie! What really gets me are the antics. I am wondering if others going back to Secretariat share some of these playful traits and personality…Although incredibly athletic, ours only ran when he wanted to, can drop and roll in an instant from a beautiful trot, loves his people but wants to do things his way most of the time. Best of all he has that beautiful Secretariat color and shines like a new copper penny in the summer sun. Oh, and he’s not a bad ride either!
What a delightful and happy story. Thank you for putting this article out. I, also, hope you write a book about this “bad boy’s “life and don’t forget to include photos.
Looking forward to seeing video about reunion.
Major thank you to the rescue farm and all rescue farms that open their hearts to animals in need.
He looks terrific, especially for his age. I had such a love of his dad and one of the real highlights of my life was getting to meet and get to spend several visits with the great one. I’m so glad that his oldest son is doing so well and that he is so loved.
This was so much fun to read. Most of the time I have tears reading the stories but this made me laugh.
This horse should have been in pictures! He sounds like more of a comedian than a racehorse. Though he did earn and won a few good races in his day.
Susan, do you have plans to write a book? I would love a “where are they now” tell all. Please
That is so sweet!!! I am hoping of bringing one to fruition in the relative near term. Thank you for asking. 🙂
I wasn’t aware that Tinner’s Way had brothers. I met him at Old Friends and became one of his many sponsors. I believe he is 26 this year. The story of quirky Fast Market is delightful and as all of your stories, leaves a hoof print on my heart.
What a wonderful Ottb story and I absolutely love it and can hardly wait for the pics or video of the two as they reunite! I am glad he is still alive and in such good care at Bright Futures Farm so, they could reunite! What fun to hear he grabs onto other horses’ tails.. 😉 gotta love those Thoroughbreds and fun loving equids in general. Thanks so much for sharing to us this heart lifting story about “Fast Market.”
Much thanks to all of our Ottb and other Equid rescue farms… You all ROCK!!!
What a great story and I am looking forward to knowing how the reunion-to-be is. Bright Future’s Farm is tops in their aftercare and equine welfare and this experience is recognition even more about the care and respect deserving of OTTBs and horses in general.
Lovely story, as always Susan 🙂 This one, of course, is extra special to me, and I type this note with tears of joy for our beloved boy. He truly is one in a million for many many reasons 🙂
We will take plenty of photos and a video of their reunion to share.
Bev: I hope Eldridge can get there soon! I wonder if Markie will remember him. It’s been such a long time…
Me too! I’ll let you know as soon as we set a date!
will love to see the photos of the reunion
Such a character…the ones you love to love…so many thoroughbred have amazing personalities…This is my favorite story….Thanks Susan
Wish he could meet his brother Tinner’s Way who lives at Old Friends in KY. He also has another brother still living named Torbey. He is doing dressage with a young girl. They are both up there in age. Love the story about about Fast Market and that he has a wonderful forever home as do his brothers.
Bright Futures Farm in PA is such a great rescue. They take in a lot of older OTTBs that otherwise wouldn’t have any place safe to go. Few of them as famous as Fast Markie, but they are all lucky to have been taken in by Bev.
I LOVE him and I’ve never even met him. This story just made my heart happy! You never forget the horses you love and they never forget you. I hope this reunion is filmed and published! Thank you for sharing
I just love this!!
Love this story!