Smarty Jones Letter

Smarty Jones Letter

Excerpts from a recent exchange of letters between Penny Chenery and Smarty Jones’ owner Patricia Chapman.

Dear Pat,

Thank you so much for your charming card and note. I know what you’re going through with the media – we got lots of criticism for retiring Secretariat at 3. It can be so frustrating and stressful. You are trying to do the best you can for your horse who has given so much and they are always second-guessing you and trying to make you feel guilty for your own choices that financial realities force upon you. Just stick to your guns. You know your horse best.

Having a “people’s horse,” like Smarty Jones, you will hear over the years, as I have, many stories from people who just want to share with you their feelings for your horse. There are just certain horses that are able to reach out and touch people’s hearts. Remember those moments when the media get you down.

Smarty is a big hero here, you were so smart to ensure that the public could see him- he is beloved, and you are too, for your gracious and giving ways. The furor will pass, trust me.

My best to Chappy.



Dear Penny,

Your card arrived yesterday (sent on from PA.) You will never know how touched I am that you would write and say the very words I needed to hear. I have been so concerned about how vicious some in the press can be and have taken it personally. You have lived it. I must tell you I cried when I read your note and will treasure it.

You have been in our thoughts and prayers. We know you have been through some tough times and hope you continue to mend and wish you a very healthy and happy ’05.

You have set a wonderful example for me to try to follow and I do think of you so often. Thank you, thank you!


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