Ron Turcotte Honored with Monument in Hometown of Grand Falls, New Brunswick

Ron Turcotte Grand Falls MonumentGRAND FALLS, NB (July 20, 2015)  – The recent dedication of the life-sized bronze statue of Ron Turcotte aboard Secretariat in his hometown of Grand Falls, New Brunswick was a proud moment for the Hall of Fame rider. The bronze was unveiled along the center boulevard in front of an enormous crowd who gathered for the event in the scenic Canadian town.

“I have received many awards and trophies from all over, but to have my own town honor me in this way is very special to me and my family,” said Turcotte.

“It is very touching, believe me. It made me cry a few times there.”

The statue features Turcotte and Secretariat as they hit the finish line of the Belmont Stakes to capture the Triple Crown in 1973. Their amazing 31-length victory in the world-record clocking of 2:24, along with the record-setting times in the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness, still stand today.

The ceremony began with the emotional and heart-felt speeches from a stage of presenting dignitaries, friends, and family who described the talented rider as “an inspiration,” “a legend,” and “a hero.”

Turcotte’s wife Gaetane best summarized the spirit of the courageous rider who has been paralyzed from the waist down since 1978 from a racing accident by stating “Never once did I hear him say, “I’m not going to get up again, I’m not going to try again.”

In typical humble manner, Turcotte deferred much of the day’s lofty praise saying “A legend… maybe, but I am no hero. The armed forces, firemen, and policemen keeping our streets safe, they are the real heroes.”

After watching his grandchildren, bedecked in miniature versions of the famed blue-and-white checkered colors of the Meadow Stable, assist in the unveiling of the matching custom cloak covering the statue, the beloved jockey told the spectators that he is “the luckiest man alive.”

The 2000 lb bronze atop a polished black granite-engraved base was commissioned by the city and created by New Brunswick artist Yves Thériault. It marks the fourth major sculpture honoring Turcotte and Secretariat, joining statues at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Belmont Park in New York, and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in Calgary.

“Being immortalized now, two places in Canada and two places in the United States, but in your hometown, it’s special,” said Turcotte.


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