We are proud to offer for auction an archival Secretariat photograph containing the extremely rare hand-signed signature of Secretariat's renowned deceased groom Eddie Sweat as well as his late exercise rider Jimmy Gaffney.
Eddie Sweat was Secretariat's trusted groom throughout the champion's racing career and the shared bond between them was unmistakable. Sweat was entrusted with the best horses in trainer Lucien Laurin's barn and groomed both Secretariat and Riva Ridge during the heyday of the Meadow Racing Stable. He remained universally respected as one of racing's finest horsemen until his death in 1999.
Jim Gaffney was a Meadow Stable exercise rider and intimately involved with the day-to-day activities of Secretariat in 1972-1973. His experiences with Secretariat are chronicled and verified in William Nack’s book, “Secretariat, The Making of A Champion,” as well as Raymond Woolfe’s book, “SECRETARIAT,” published in 1974. Mr. Gaffney was instrumental in the documentation of Secretariat's horse shoes and other memorabilia and continued to share his experiences and affection for the great champion until his death in 2010.
The vintage 5" x 7" photograph captures Secretariat during a morning workout at Belmont Park with his exercise rider Jim Gaffney aboard the chestnut colt. The photo labeled with "SECRETARIAT, Triple Crown Winner, James Gaffney up" contains the actual hand-signed signatures of Mr. Gaffney and Mr. Sweat as part of the subsequent personalization, "All the Best Secretariat & Jim Gaffney & Groom Eddie Sweat." The image also contains the added bonus of a collectible United States Postal Service Secretariat Stamp with corresponding postmark. The photo has impeccable provenance and has been catalogued within the Secretariat Archives registry.
The rarity of the Eddie Sweat signature represents a wonderful opportunity for any Secretariat fan or serious sports autograph collector. We estimate there are less than a dozen authenticated Eddie Sweat signatures in existence. Accompanied by Certificate of Authenticity.
Auction closes Aug. 26 on eBay at approximately 8:00 pm EDT
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