New York Times bestselling author Joe Drape dropped by CBS Sports Radio on Wednesday to discuss his book, “American Pharoah: The Untold Story of the Triple Crown Winner’s Legendary Rise,” which chronicles the colt that captivated the masses in 2015
American Pharoah was the 12th Triple Crown winner and the first since Affirmed in 1978.
“We waited 37 years,” Drape said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “The Triple Crown is a feat like no other in sports. I don’t even know what it is even close to. It is something that comes along very rarely that takes an incredible amount of talent from the colt, which we had in American Pharoah, a lot of luck, which he had along the way of staying healthy and zigging when he could have zagged, and it takes magic. That’s what it was.”
Horse racing, Drape pointed out, is America’s oldest sport.
“It predated baseball,” he said, “and it kind of goes to the essence of our character as Americans: ‘My horse is faster than yours. Let’s bet on it.’ It’s also the only sport ever run out of the White House. Andrew Jackson ran a stable out of it. He was a horse-racing guy. So it culminated all the pageantry, all the history, all the athleticism, the records – that’s what it is. People want to see great things, and I think in this day and age – not to get maudlin about it – we don’t see things like that enough.”
American Pharoah won the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, and the Belmont. Drape called the final stretch at the Belmont “soul-quaking.”
“The noise was out of-hand thunderous, flowers and confetti started coming down, and people started hugging each other,” he said. “(It was) a sea of cell phones. You would look out, and it was just cell phones watching them come home.”