Phar Lap (1983) Movie Script

Yeah, you know what's
coming up, don't ya?
Hang on a minute.
Hang on. I've gotta mix it up.
That's it.
You're a good fella today.
You love all that stuff
now, don't ya?
Crowds and cheering.
The bigger, the better, eh?
What's the matter?
You're sick. Bill!
Cashy, get in here! Bobby's sick!
What did he eat yesterday?
Just his usual feed and a bit of grass.
- Alfalfa?
- Yes.
Was it wet?
Look, it's not colic.
It's something worse.
I know what I'm doing.
Ooh, matey.
That's the boy.
Bill! Cashy! Where the hell are ya?!
- What's the matter?
- He's gettin' worse, Bill.
Mate, come on.
We'd better get the vet at Tanforan.
Keep him moving.
OK. Come on.
Come on. You've gotta keep going.
Come on.
Oh, Bobby, you can't!
Please, get up!
Please, make him get up.
Oh, Bobby.
No, you can't die. Please.
Please, no.
/ The wonder horse
/ Known on every course
/ From Australia to... /
This is the Don Lee
Radio Network.
Today the turf world is in tears.
Phar Lap, whom some say
is the greatest...
This is KMTR, Los Angeles.
Governor Rolph of California
has appealed to all
the relevant agencies
to mobilise their forces
in a joint effort
to seek out the cause
of Phar Lap's death.
Mr. Wendell Vincent, chief of
Western Food and Drug Administration,
says that arsenic trioxide was found
in the horse's liver and lungs.
As his autopsy revealed
no such evidence of...
Dr. T.R. Creel, an American vet,
told the press
that he didn't die of colic.
They all suddenly
got together
and issued a joint statement
saying, in effect,
they don't know how he died
and probably never will.
However, Dr. Nielsen,
Phar Lap's Australian veterinarian
declared he had no such doubts.
The horse died of an irritant poison.
...and I know what it means when
the lining has been eaten away.
I'd like to have come to
some other conclusion,
but I'm afraid it's impossible.
Please stand for 30 seconds,
as a tribute to the great racehorse,
Phar Lap, who died last week.
This is KMTR, Los Angeles.
Mr. Telford.
Mr. Telford, can you have a few
words with me about the tragedy?
Leave me alone.
Do you think he was poisoned?
What does it matter? He's dead.
Well, why is it, do you think,
that there's been this incredible
reaction to Phar Lap's death?
After all, he was just a horse.
He wasn't JUST a horse.
He was the best.
He's a bit skinny, isn't he, Harry?
He's lost condition
on the voyage over.
Harry, he's only come
from New Zealand.
Well, he's just a colt.
Why's he got all those warts?
Well, you don't buy horses
just for their looks.
I wonder what your
American friend's going to say.
This has gotta be a joke.
Harry, you got the real horse hidden
around the back somewhere, right?
He's got a good, big frame.
Go on.
This is not a horse, Harry.
This is a cross between
a sheepdog and a kangaroo.
You told me this thing
was gonna be a champion, huh?
Well, he will be, Mr. Davis.
He's got Carbine on both sides
of his bloodline.
Greatest horse of them all.
Greatest of them all.
I paid 168 for this, Harry, sight
unseen from a goddamn catalogue.
Now, I'll tell you the truth -
I don't really care who he's got
in his family tree.
Why the hell didn't you write
across to New Zealand,
ask somebody to look at him for you?
Well, he'll fill out.
He will, huh? Harry!
Some guy told me his sire
and dam were hopeless -
didn't win a race between them.
- Night Raid out of...
- Entreaty.
Did not win a single race,
either one of them.
Well, he's got good blood
further back.
Now, no-one looks further back.
- Sell him.
- But you've gotta give him a chance.
Why? I'm not paying you to feed and
train something that looks like that.
I'm not in the habit of throwing
good money after bad, my friend.
Well, if you sell him without giving
him a chance, you're a fool.
I assure you I'm no fool.
Sell him for the best price
you can get.
I'll lease him, then.
Well, I can't buy him.
Haven't got the money.
You sign him over to me for three
years, I'll pay for his upkeep.
Give you a third of his winnings.
Three years?
Well, if you're so bloody sure
he's a no-hoper,
what have you got to lose?
What have I got to lose?
How can we afford to
lease him, Harry?
I'm the one who has to face
the feed merchant
when he comes for his money
on Mondays.
You just scoot out the back.
You've got about as much faith
in me as Davis.
You know who that colt's
got in his bloodline?
Carbine twice through Musket.
There's St. Frusquin,
Prayer Wheel, Winkle...
Harry! I haven't even got the money
to buy your son's new shoes.
All Cappy's clothes
are hand-me-downs.
Well, that horse is
gonna be a champion.
Well, can't anyone understand that?
He's gonna be a champion.
Get out, you bastard.
It's the big fella -
Happy Harry's horse.
Come on!
Pick on someone
your own size!
Youse try and do better.
- Think you're smart, don't ya?
- Smarter than you, son.
You try and put a bridle on him.
He'll bloody well
do the same to you.
Come on, Tommy.
Yeah, go on.
Alright, I'll have a go.
Ta. Ta.
Good, mate.
That's it.
You got a real goer
this time, Harry.
Jeez, you can pick 'em, Harry.
Harry knows his bloodlines.
I s'pose you'd pick one
like that for me.
Go on, you bloody mongrel!
Get away.
Excuse me.
What is that horse's name?
Milkal's Galloping Giraffe.
- Cattle.
- Rocket.
How about Lightning?
Mr. Ping, what's the word
for 'lightning' in your lingo?
- Farlap.
- Got a name for the colt, Harry.
Lay off, McCready.
No, seriously. Pingy reckons
it's really lucky.
I'll write it down
for you, Mr. Telford.
Very lucky.
Gotta have seven letters.
Last four Melbourne Cup winners
had seven letters.
Melbourne Cup? You've
gotta be joking.
Yes, Mr. Telford. Seven letters.
Phar Lap it is.
Take the bloody thing
back to the stables.
- Go, Lightning!
- Good one, Lightning.
"So the king saw
the beautiful girl
"with the golden star
upon her brow..."
"...and was so enchanted
with her beauty
"that he asked if she would
become his bride."
Here's Daddy.
What's wrong?
Oh, he's lazy.
Bone lazy.
Still won't run.
Oh, give up on him, Harry. Sell him.
I'm not gonna give him
that satisfaction.
He's going to learn to work hard
even if it kills me.
You poor little beggar.
Whoa, matey.
Whoa, mate.
You'll be alright, mate. Hold on.
Hold on.
You'll be right. Hold on, matey.
Get up. Come on!
Get yourself up.
That's a boy.
You're alright, are ya?
Just worked into
the bloody ground, eh?
I can't pay you this week, Tommy.
Just have to wait till I have a win.
I didn't come about that.
I've just seen Phar Lap.
Oh, yeah.
He shouldn't have been
left like that, boss.
He looks half-dead.
And I don't think you should
work him so hard.
There's one thing
I don't tolerate, sonny -
stable hands who tell me
how to do my job.
Now, pack your things and clear out.
I was just worried about the horse!
Hard work never killed any horse!
If a few more trainers cottoned on
to that they might do a lot better.
Now, pack your things and get.
And all you said was
that he looked half-dead?
I reckon it's just not fair.
Keep your nose out of it, Emma,
it's none of your business.
But he is killing the horse, Missus.
Lazy horses are like lazy people -
they have to be jolted out of it.
Now take your places, please.
Don't let your food go cold.
For what we are about to receive
may the Lord make us truly thankful.
- How's it going, boss?
- G'day, boss.
Mr. Telford!
- Boss.
- Hey, boss.
Don't go back up the bush, Tommy.
Some other trainer will give you a job.
Not when they hear I got the sack.
Yes, they will, Tommy.
They know what old Telford's like.
Enough of that.
Mr. Telford's here to see you, Tommy.
He's out on the porch.
What's going on between
you and young Tommy?
- Nothing, Mum.
- Better not be.
What have you done to that horse?
Spoiled him rotten.
Anyone goes near him
he rips their bloody shirt off.
He won't eat, he won't...
Now, get back to the
stables. Get him fed.
Reckon I got my job back.
Gee, he's a rude old cow.
I wouldn't go back.
Better go. Bobby will fret.
Phar Lap.
See you later.
Those beggars who
reckon you can't run
are gonna get a shock today,
eh, old fella?
He's really starting to fill out, boss.
Hard work - puts muscle on.
Are you gonna watch the race?
I'll listen from down here.
Oh, don't give him more sugar!
He'll die of bloody diabetes
before his first race.
Harry, say hello to Mrs. Davis.
- Harry Telford.
- How do you do?
OK, let's take a look at him.
You said he was as ugly as a camel.
You should have
seen him a year ago.
So, I understand his training times
have been better recently, yeah?
When he's ridden hard.
He's still lazy.
Have you put any money on him?
- I don't bet.
- I see.
You're not exactly
oozing confidence, are ya?
I don't think I'll bet on him either.
- Oh, I'm gonna have a bet on him.
- Yeah?
- What's your name?
- Tom Woodcock, ma'am.
I'm Phar Lap's strapper.
- Do you think he'll win, Tom?
- I reckon he will.
As they pass
the 3-furlong post,
and Exact is the leader,
about a length and a half
in front of Memento.
Then Phar Lap, the newcomer,
the big red horse,
moving up on the outside.
Cabaret Girl on the inside of him,
followed then by Busham
and Rose Flight.
Coming up towards the home turn,
Phar Lap, rider having great trouble,
and Exact has kicked away -
about four to five lengths
in front of Cabaret Girl,
who's starting to make up ground,
with Memento on the inside.
And Phar Lap looks as if he is
going to hit the outside fence.
As they straighten up for
the run to the judge now
and Exact is four to five
lengths in front of Memento,
and Cabaret Girl
moving up on the outside,
and Phar Lap still racing wide.
With half a furlong
to go it's all Exact,
and Exact is going to win easily
about two lengths
in front of Cabaret Girl.
Memento third, a long distance then
to Busham from Rose Flight,
and Phar Lap ran last.
- Do you like it?
- Here, listen to this.
"The big 2-year-old Phar Lad..."
They can't even get
the horse's name right.
"...enhanced his reputation
for consistency
"by finishing last yet again."
He's a real smart guy,
this Bert Wolfe, huh?
Oh, I'm sorry, sweetheart.
There's a boy.
Go on, let me get on
with it. Go on.
Alright, up we go.
You can take Phar Lap
out this morning.
I'm taking young Cappy
for a ride on Sally.
And work him hard.
- How's Lightning, Tommy?
- Good.
- Harry given up on him, has he?
- Yeah, he's still in bed.
You better hang onto him,
he might take off.
I wanna try something different
this morning, Cashy.
I'll hold Bobby back then see if
I can get him to go out after you.
- What's the sense of that?
- We'll just try it.
He's gotta learn to be a winner.
After him now!
Don't let him get away.
You beauty.
Good on you, mate.
Alright, Cashy, let's try that again.
Off with your cap.
That's a good fella.
Yeah. Up we go.
Did he like it?
Yeah, he's a regular
little horseman here.
Did Daddy take you
on the big horsey?
- Yeah.
- I bet you're hungry.
Are you hungry?
We'll take your shoes and socks off.
What's all this?
I thought I told you
to stop all that.
We needed the money.
Well, send 'em back. We can manage
without you being a servant.
- How, Harry?
- We can manage!
Harry, I'm sick to death of
struggling for every penny.
I won't have you taking
in laundry. We'll manage.
How - Phar Lap?
He'll come good. He's got Carbine
on both sides of his bloodline.
Harry, people are laughing at you.
He's hopeless. He's a dud.
That's right - he's flying, Mr. Davis.
Yeah, I always knew he'd come good.
Just needed a lot of
hard work put into him.
I've knocked that lazy streak
out of him at last.
No, no, you wait till
you see him next time.
The first race I ever rode
was on one of Reg's horses.
"Do you reckon I got a chance?"
I said. "Yeah", he said.
"The five other jockeys have
backed you for a fortune."
Could I have a word
with you in private, Jim?
You can talk in front
of these blokes, Harry.
If they hear it direct
they can't spread any rumours.
I've got a good horse
for you, for the Derby.
- Yeah? Who?
- Phar Lap.
I reckon I'm fixed up
for the Derby, Harry.
But I'll keep it in mind.
Phar Lap - he's gotta be joking.
Harry, the best horses in the country
are entered into the Derby.
Now, I know you're convinced
the horse has improved,
but, Harry, for Christ's sake,
we're talking about the Derby.
I'll be back in a second, honey. Sorry.
I'm hoping to get Jim Pike.
Jim Pike?
Now I know you're dreaming.
Why would Jim Pike
wanna ride Phar Lap?
He said he'd keep him in mind.
Come on, he was being polite.
Look, Harry, you wanna
enter him, you enter him.
But you make sure you do it
under your name... not mine.
I'm not gonna be humiliated
in front of all the top owners
in this country, believe me.
I need 30 quid to enter him.
Oh, boy.
You wanna enter him,
you find the money.
That was part of our deal, right?
I tried.
Then I'm in very good company
when I say no, hmm?
...alright, you can have the money.
On two conditions -
one, you don't use my name...
...and two, if that horse doesn't
race well this time we sell him.
Race well? He's gotta win.
I owe more than 300 quid
and I can't pay my rent.
Pity Pike's lost his mount.
Masterful horseman -
compulsive gambler, though.
Good luck in the Derby, Mr. McKinnon.
Oh, well, thank you.
We think we'll give you
a run for your money.
You've got a horse
in the Derby, Mrs...?
- Davis. My husband, David.
- How do you do?
Sir Samuel Hordern.
- Sir Samuel.
- Yes, we have - Phar Lap.
I don't believe I've heard of him.
You probably wouldn't. He...
he's just in for the run.
And we think he'll win.
- And where did you get him?
- New Zealand.
For 168, quite a bargain.
Isn't your horse a New Zealander?
Carradale. Yes, he is.
Who in the blazes were they?
Pushy little Jew. Sells dinnerware.
Door to door.
- Knows nothing about horses.
- He's not a member, is he?
Hard to keep them out these days.
Handsome woman, though.
- Did you have to do that?
- What?
McKinnon practically runs
racing in this country.
Did you have to tell him
what Phar Lap cost?
He paid 10 times that much
for Carradale.
Mrs. Davis.
What do you think, Tommy?
There's some good horses
out there today, Mrs. Davis.
My husband will tell me I'm a fool
but I'm gonna back him anyway.
Does Mr. Telford always
get that nervous?
If Bobby doesn't win today,
he's finished.
Suppose I am too.
I've been looking for you, Harry.
My horse for the Derby's
been scratched.
Flies when he's fit,
but if there's a germ between
here and Perth he'll pick it up.
Would you like me to ride Phar Lap?
You bet 20...?
Bea, you're crazy, you know that?
Why? Why did you do that?
I just felt lucky.
Ladies and gentlemen,
there has been a
late change of rider.
Number two, Phar Lap, will
now be ridden by J. Pike.
They're off
in the AJC Derby,
and Carradale was one
of the best to begin
and is being ridden hard
to the lead in the early stages,
while Phar Lap has
missed the start badly,
he's last as they settle down.
Carradale crossed over the rails
to lead about a length and a half
to Honour and Toper.
They were followed by Cathmar,
Comanche, Lorason, Pentheus,
Nedda, Queen Nassau and Phar Lap.
As they race down to the straight
and the leader is Carradale,
a length and a half
to the good of Toper.
Honour is next, over on the rails.
They were followed further back
by Sir Ribble and Lorason,
then Pentheus and Nedda, Queen
Nassau, and Phar Lap is still last.
They race towards the back
and Carradale kicked away.
It's Carradale...
Sir Ribble next, on the
outside of Comanche.
And Phar Lap is still
on the tail of the field.
Lorason ahead of him, with
Pentheus, Nedda and Queen Nassau.
- But Carradale shows the way in front.
- Go!
Here's Phar Lap going
around them quickly now
about three or four deep.
Go, Bobby!
But here's Phar Lap
coming quickly now.
Comanche's back in midfield.
Carradale in front, but here's
Phar Lap going up very quickly now.
Go, Bobby! Go!
Carradale and Phar Lap,
they're locked together
head and head as they
race towards the turn.
Carradale on the inside
and Phar Lap on the outside.
And they've moved away
about three lengths further,
followed by Toper and Cathmar.
Phar Lap on the outside of Carradale.
Pike says, "Go now," and Phar Lap
races to the lead in the Derby.
About two or three lengths
to the good of Cathmar.
But the big red horse, Phar Lap,
he's racing away with the AJC Derby.
It's Phar Lap's Derby.
But it's Phar Lap's Derby,
he's won the Derby very easily.
You'll find that the winner will
be Phar Lap, ridden by Jim Pike,
second will be Carradale,
and third will be Honour.
After the 1929 AJC Derby...
Come on, boss, you've
gotta get the sash!
I can't, Tommy.
I can't.
Number two, Phar Lap,
J. Pike, the winner.
Second was number nine, Carradale...
Don't say I didn't
warn you, Mr. McKinnon.
- Congratulations, Mrs...
- Davis.
Promising horse.
It will be interesting
to see how he performs
when he gets a decent
weight on his back.
- Davis?
- Yes?
Ah... gentlemen.
Is it true you've always thought
the horse wasn't any good?
Who told you that?
- It's a story going around.
- Well, there's no truth to it.
I've had utter faith in this
horse from the very beginning.
Then why did you lease him
to Harry Telford?
Oh, because Mr. Telford
found the horse
and I thought it was only fair.
Now, I want to make it clear that
I've had absolute faith in this horse
from the very first moment
I laid eyes upon him.
I suppose you had a
lot of money on him, then.
- Well...
- We did quite well.
Thank you.
Well, a third of it
has to go to Davis.
Oh, Harry, let's put it
into something safe.
Your brother reckons
we should buy a property.
I can't raise sheep.
You said it yourself a dozen times -
that training's a rotten life.
Oh, yeah, well, it is.
When you've just got a few
hacks stuck in rented stables.
I'm gonna have my own place now,
love, and run things my way.
And Cappy and I will see even
less of you than we do now.
Well, what do you think
it's like for us, Harry?
You're up at 3:30 every morning
and by the afternoon
you're dead on your feet.
What do you expect me to do, woman?
Slink back to the bush just
when I finally get my chance?
Sorry, love.
Look... Phar Lap wasn't
a fluke, you know.
I picked him from the bloodlines
and I persevered with him
while every other trainer
was laughing at me.
No one's laughing now.
You've proved your point.
I haven't even begun.
I know more about
bloodlines and training
than any other bastard
in this country.
And by the time I've finished...
...they'll all know it.
And the big red,
Phar Lap, has burst away.
But now here comes the big red
down the centre of the track -
Phar Lap, he's starting
to storm home out wide.
Phar Lap races up
and goes to the lead,
and it's another effortless
victory for Phar Lap.
The Wall Street
stock market crash
has caused a crisis
in the American economy.
The 3-year-old racehorse Phar Lap
continues his run of good luck.
The best I ever rode.
In fact, I don't think
there ever was his equal.
Certainly not during my time.
Phar Lap is dashing
well clear of the opposition.
He's racing away,
nothing can catch him.
And don't the Victorian
crowd love it?
I've got nothing against
Telford or even Davis.
But let's face it - they're not
going to put any time and effort
back into the sport
like we're doing.
They've just happened on a horse
with very indifferent breeding
and a freakish turn of speed.
And they're entering him
in everything for the money.
Phar Lap, most sensational
Australian galloper of all time.
Record-breaking streak -
four wins and 4,000 in a fortnight.
This has been an amazing week
for Phar Lap.
He's been entered in three
major VRC races and won the lot.
What a horse!
Pike says it's
Phar Lap's phenomenal speed
that makes him so superior
to all other horses.
They just happen to
be killing horseracing.
A lot of my friends are saying
it's not worth putting
their horses against Phar Lap.
And the bookmakers won't take bets.
Well, the way Telford's
overracing and overtraining him...
...he can't have too many
more wins left in him.
It's Phar Lap. Pike's letting
the champion have his head.
He's racing away. Nothing
can stop the 'Red Terror'.
Kick him along! Come on!
He's surely a horse and a half.
The Red Terror - here
he is in action again,
only cantering this time.
Our cameraman is racing after him
but he's getting away.
After him, Malcolm Campbell,
or you'll lose him!
The sand roll... and
how Phar Lap enjoys it.
"Rolls the wriggles out," he tells
the stableboy, young Tommy Woodcock.
"Come here, sir, I want
my sugar. I've earned it."
Oh, what a horse!
Back to work, go on.
Come on, get that
contraption out of here.
...this is Eric Connolly.
- Harry.
- I know.
...Eric's been kind enough
to offer some suggestions
about managing Phar Lap's career.
I'll bet he has.
Which races the horse is allowed
to win and which ones he's not.
Stake money, Harry.
Compared with what you could make
with a few well-placed bets.
When I train horses, Connolly,
I train them to win.
Pulling horses is not in my line.
Do you understand that we could make
an extraordinary amount
of money here?
- I'm doing alright.
- But I'm not.
Well, that's your problem.
Now get outta here!
I've got work to do.
What's wrong with you?
He's being worked too hard, boss.
Are you telling me
I don't know my job?
He's worn out.
Then how come he's still winning?
He'd win if he was half-dead.
If you keep him racing and training
like this you'll burn him out.
You know your trouble, sonny?
You think horses are human.
Well, I've been around
long enough to know
that if you treat 'em too soft
they'll take advantage
of you every time.
Now, if you want to come
with me and your beloved Bobby
when we go to Melbourne,
you just better button your lip
and do what you're told.
And I'll top-dress all the paddocks.
We'll have grass greener
than you've ever seen it.
The marshes over there, full
of birds - snipe, everything.
Do you like it?
It could do with a
few more trees over here.
Well, we'll plant them.
As many as you want.
Trees everywhere.
We'll have space
all around us at last.
I still don't understand why
we couldn't find a place near Sydney.
I told you a hundred times -
Melbourne is the racing capital.
The big owners are here.
The big races. The big crowds.
Now, if you're going
to make your mark,
this is the place you have to be.
- I'll just miss my friends.
- Well, we'll make new ones.
Good God, woman, when this place
is set up it will be like paradise.
You'll have to beat the
visitors off with a stick.
Look, we're going to have
a racetrack over here.
Really make something
of that wreck of a house.
- Can we have a bit of a garden?
- Yeah - roses and everything.
Swings and slides for Cappy.
It's hard to imagine.
As long as we're not
getting in too deep.
I've worked on a
shoestring long enough
to know the only way to make
it in this game is do it big.
Now, you buy your yearlings,
you train 'em hard,
and if they don't shape up you get
rid of 'em and bring in some more.
Sol's no fool.
He wouldn't be lending me money
if there was any risk.
Every champion for the next 20 years
is going to come out of this place.
Are you going to go down
to Melbourne with Telford?
I suppose.
He's treated you pretty rotten.
Yeah, he's a cranky old ratbag.
But if I don't go down,
what will happen to Bobby?
Will you write?
Spelling's pretty crook.
Well, you'd better not, then.
I can't stand bad spelling.
- Keep him moving, Tommy.
- Stand back.
Harry... how did the
wonder horse travel?
Oh, I love the way you blokes keep
calling him the "wonder horse".
You weren't calling him that
when he was losing all
his races at the start.
Well, he's really found form now.
Who do you think
made him find the form?
Do you reckon he learned
all by himself?
And you think he'll
win the Melbourne Cup?
Of course he will.
And the Caulfield Cup.
- You've entered him in both?
- Why not? He'll win them.
A lot of owners would think
it was too strenuous for him.
A lot of owners don't
know anything about horses.
We've heard a lot about this
new training establishment
you're starting at Braeside -
is it ready yet?
- Near enough.
- Make way. Stand back.
Stand back, please.
- Looks good, eh?
- Wonderful.
Harry, the bank's
just been on the phone.
They said we're overdrawn - badly.
Well, they're mad. I checked
the figures last night.
No wonder the country's in a mess.
Bloody banks can't
even do their sums.
Harry, you've counted the six
in the thousands column
instead of the hundreds.
- Oh, God, so I have.
- Let me do the books.
What are we going to tell the bank?
They'll just have to wait
till Phar Lap wins both the cups.
- What do we do till then?
- Tell 'em the cheque's in the mail.
Amounis and Phar Lap
are the two best horses
in the country, right?
Now, if they both race in the
Caulfield Cup - no offence, May -
but Phar Lap's gonna come
in first and Amounis second.
And if they both race
in the Melbourne Cup,
the same thing's gonna happen, OK?
Now, Bea, if you were a bookmaker
and I wanted to lay a bet with you
that Phar Lap would win both cups,
what kind of odds would you give me?
- Very short odds.
- Right.
Now, if I wanted to lay a bet that
Amounis would win the Caulfield
and Phar Lap the Melbourne, then what
kind of odds would you give me?
Much better odds.
Amounis won't beat Phar Lap.
So we put the money on the
Amounis-Phar Lap double,
now at what, Eric?
20, 30 to 1.
And at the last minute... we
scratch Phar Lap from the Caulfield
and make a fortune.
Can you do things like that?
Well... Can you get
the money on, Eric?
I'll have bets all round the country
before they know what's hit 'em.
Of course, we only have one problem -
convincing Harry to pull
Phar Lap out of the Caulfield.
Give him a share of the winnings.
An honest man is someone who
hasn't had a good enough offer.
You don't know Harry.
Alright, look, I'll go through
the figures with you once again.
Whether you win both cups or not,
you're still gonna be bankrupt
within the next six months.
Some of those yearlings
are going to be champions.
Well, you won't know that
for at least a year.
Harry, I am offering you 20,000 cash
to scratch Phar Lap
from the Caulfield Cup.
- No.
- "No."
You're crazy.
You're absolutely crazy.
What the hell is the difference?
He'll still win the Melbourne Cup.
- That's the important one.
- He's going to win them both.
Why? Why?
Because it's what every trainer
worth his salt dreams.
Dream... Vi!
You're good with figures.
Will you please explain
to the man that I'm right?
Will you tell him that he's
gonna be broke within six months?
Harry's been in this game for 20
years and he's never been dishonest.
We can sell the yearlings
and put off staff.
Harry, scratch the horse
and take the 20,000.
I can't sell the yearlings.
One of them will turn out to
be a champion, nothing surer.
We could start again
in a year, Harry.
Anyway, we don't have
to sell all of them.
Maybe he has been raced too much.
Perhaps he does need a rest.
Can't you blokes ever
leave a man alone?
I've been trying to telephone you,
Harry, but you're always engaged.
I leave the phone off the hook and
you still try to drive me barmy.
Why did you scratch Phar Lap
from the Caulfield Cup, Harry?
He's run-down, needs a rest.
You told me a few days ago
he was at his peak.
Why don't you just clear off?
Harry... someone's put 50,000
on Amounis to win the Caulfield
and Phar Lap to win the Melbourne.
And they've got odds of 30 to 1.
- Nothing to do with me.
- I'd be a bit worried if I were you.
Mrs. Telford.
If Amounis wins the Caulfield...
...the only way some
bookies can save their necks
is to stop Phar Lap
winning the Melbourne Cup.
No-one would hurt a
champion like Phar Lap.
You'd be surprised
what people will do
if they stand to lose
a million pounds, Harry.
Look after yourself.
And your horse.
They're rounding the home turn
and Muratti is the leader
from Lampra, Shadow King,
Second Wind is joining in.
As they straighten up and Amounis
is coming with a big turn of speed.
Coming to the furlong pole,
Muratti still in front.
Amounis is starting to peg
him back under his big weight.
Amounis has ranged up on the outside
with a half-furlong to go.
Soulton coming home well, with Alcman
and Cragford, Second Wind.
But Amounis is going on to score
a great win in the Caulfield Cup.
And Amounis has won by a half-length
to Soulton, third Alcman.
I'm telling you again -
take your horse out of the cup
or it's going to
end up as dog's meat.
Come on, Bobby!
There's a boy.
Yeah, g'day.
Come on, then!
It's all a lot of hot air.
Nobody would dare
hurt you or the horse.
It's alright for you.
I'm the one who's in the firing line.
Vi's even too scared
to leave the house.
I started getting these letters
as soon as Amounis
won the Caulfield Cup.
Now, they say the big fella's
gonna be poisoned,
run down by a truck,
shot at by a poison dart,
have acid thrown in his eyes.
Well, how would you like that
sort of thing in the mail?
- I'm gonna call the police.
- No!
I don't want you to do that.
There's no reason Woodcock is
with the horse all the time.
Well, his life's at stake too.
If you don't call the police, I will.
Harry, if you call the police
they're only gonna ask why the
horse is getting all these threats.
Do you understand?
Alright, I'll hire a guard,
if it'll make you happy.
I've been over him, boss -
he hasn't been touched.
What happened? Did you just stand
there and let him get shot at?
Fair go, Harry. The lad put himself
between the horse and the gun.
In my opinion, he
deserves a bloody medal.
Sorry, son.
Come on, Bobby boy.
- Is he alright?
- No thanks to you.
What happened to that guard
that you were going to arrange?
We don't have time to argue now, we
gotta get this horse somewhere safe.
- Fast, before they try again.
- Is he alright?
You better get him
somewhere safe too.
If they can't shoot the horse,
they might try to shoot you.
Don't worry. I'll take care of him,
you watch out for the horse.
- Have you got someplace safe?
- I'll take him...
I don't want to know.
Get him there and keep
him there until cup day.
Now, can you get some guns?
Guns? Alright, good.
Don't be afraid to use them.
You come with me. Let's go.
Like this? I've just come
from the steam bath.
Like that. Let's go!
Will the shooting
make any difference
to the race plans, Mr. Davis?
Gentlemen, do Mr. Telford or I look
like men who are easily frightened?
Thank you!
We are a pioneering nation,
forged out of the wilderness
by men who knew the value of
their horses and their dogs.
For an Australian to
shoot at a thoroughbred
is almost unthinkable.
In my books, this is a day
of profound national shame.
Alright. I don't want you
leaving this room for anything.
There'll be a guard outside
the door to get you your food.
Food? You must be joking.
I've got another 4 lb. to lose
and no bloody steam bath!
- Don't eat.
- Hey, I've gotta lay me bets!
No bets.
Mr. Raymond?
- Whereabouts are your stables?
- Right through here.
Try now.
Give a man a go.
Well done, Sergeant.
I had to - got a couple
of quid on Phar Lap.
- Yes?
- Where's that horse of yours?
I wish I knew.
If he's not here an hour before
the race he'll be disqualified.
You try that and you'll
have a riot on your hands.
Half this country's
backing him today.
We'll put the race back 15 minutes.
15 minutes.
Harry... where the hell is he?
They should have
been here an hour ago.
There's a fortune at stake
and you lose the goddamn horse.
- Don't blame me.
- What do you mean, don't blame you?
The horse was your responsibility.
Come on, find him. Fast.
- Let's go!
- Alright.
The chargers for the Melbourne Cup
of 1930
are now parading in...
If he's here I'll ride him, if
he's not, I won't. Fair enough?
Didn't even get a chance
to back myself in any case.
Here are the starters and riders
in the 1930 Melbourne Cup.
I just sent Telford out
to look for him.
There's really nothing
more I can do, is there?
We can't wait any longer.
We've got rules.
Phar Lap! Phar Lap!
Phar Lap! Phar Lap!
Well, I suggest you get
your committee together
and change the rules.
Where the hell are they?
Keep going!
- About bloody time!
- We broke down, boss.
It won't be long now, Bobby boy.
Can't let you miss this one, eh?
As the horses file out
onto the track,
the mystery still remains,
where is Phar Lap?
- Go round to the Members.
- I can't go in there.
Do as you're bloody well told.
Soulton, followed by Nadean
and Some Quality.
Shadow King, just going down the
track, is a picture of fitness.
And there's Soulton, the great
runner-up in the Caulfield Cup,
ridden by Frank Dempsey.
Carradale, ridden by Harold Jones.
And here comes Phar Lap!
The mighty champion has arrived.
They can't stop us now,
Bobby boy. Show 'em, Pikey.
If anything catches us today,
mate, it'll have to have wings.
Phar Lap is just moving
into place now
and we're ready for the start
of the 1930 Melbourne Cup,
the richest and most illustrious event
on the Australian racing calendar
and one of the great
racing events of the world.
We're running late.
And they're getting
some sort of a line.
Shadow King standing well.
Phar Lap with the red colours -
the white sleeves, black
armbands, that red cap -
looking a picture of fitness
as they move up for a start
in the 1930 Melbourne Cup.
The starter looks to
be happy with them.
They're coming in very well.
Steady. Steady. Go!
And they're off!
And on the inside,
first out was Second Wind
from Tregilla, who began well.
Temptation is prominent.
And Carradale is up there.
As they come onto the course
proper the first time,
where the leader here is Temptation,
showing out from Carradale.
They're going forward on the outside,
followed by Second Wind.
And a bit further back
is Shadow King,
and Phar Lap is well
back in the field.
As they come down the straight...
Ha! The wonder horse seems
to have run out of steam.
You can't buy real quality
for 160 guineas.
- No.
- Carradale's going well, Lachlan.
He's going to win me that cup.
And Phar Lap is next,
on the outside of Muratti.
And a fair way back is Shadow King,
on the side of the track.
It's Temptation showing
out by 1.5 lengths.
Now! Off you go, Bobby boy.
That's it.
Some Quality
and Phar Lap,
eased off the fence by Jim Pike,
is starting to go forward rapidly.
As they come around
the back of the course,
it's still Temptation out in the lead,
from Carradale,
running a good race, second.
Second Wind on the
inside of Shadow King.
And here comes Phar Lap
down the outside.
You've won it!
Now, don't get carried away.
A little bit of modesty
wouldn't go astray.
Does he really know
why they're cheering?
It's the only reason he wins.
Vain as a peacock, aren't ya?
Thank you. Thank you very much.
Thank you for being here also.
Guys, could you play something local
for my very dear and very close
friend, Mr. Harry Telford.
Thank you.
(Band plays 'Along the Road
to Gundagai')
Of course, the real danger
when you're riding Phar Lap
is he's so bloody smooth and easy,
you're liable to drop off... sleep!
Congratulations, Mr. Davis.
Thank you, boys. Here you are, kid.
Thanks very much, Mr. Davis.
A tenner? A tenner for the best
little strapper in Australia?
You lousy bastard.
He's drunk.
The horse only wins
'cause Tom tells him to.
Yeah, you tell him.
Here you go, Tommy.
Here, buy yourself a lemonade.
Jimmy, you can't give me that much.
I just have. I just have.
Excuse me.
Hey, Davis. Don't be stingy,
let the moths out of your purse.
Yeah, come on.
Throws money around
like a bloke with no arms.
Take it all, kid.
Anyway, so there
I am having a little snooze.
Suddenly I wake up and
we're halfway down the straight
and all these horses out in front.
And I thought, "Crikey,
I might have to use the whip!"
- Mrs. Davis.
- Oh, please, sit down.
How does it feel to be a wealthy man?
I reckon I should give some back.
Back? I came over
to give you some more.
Oh, Mrs. Davis, no...
Dave won a fortune today.
What are you gonna do with it?
God, I don't know.
Isn't there a girl
in Sydney you're fond of?
I've only taken her out once or twice.
Do you write to her?
I've sent her a postcard or two.
Is she pretty?
Too right! I reckon if she was
in America, she could be in films!
Oh, as pretty as that.
Yeah. You ask Cashy.
And all those stars have got
make-up and everything to help 'em.
She looks just as good
as they do without it.
Have you told her that?
Wouldn't be game.
Why not?
You'd make a real dill of yourself.
Sometimes I wonder
how Australian men
ever manage to find themselves wives.
Go up to Sydney and see her, Tommy.
I want you to know
that whatever differences
you and I have had
personally through the years,
I have never, ever doubted
your ability as a trainer.
And when your lease
on Phar Lap is up,
I still want you
to stay on and train him.
You're not gonna offer me a share?
Sure. You'll get your training
fees plus 10% of his winnings.
But I found that horse.
I made him a champion.
And you've also had him for 3 years
and won yourself a Melbourne Cup.
You give me 50% of him
or find some other trainer.
Don't threaten me, Telford.
There are plenty of other
good trainers around.
Well, you find one who'll make
him win as often as I do.
Stubborn bastard.
- Who?
- Harry.
He wants a half-share on the horse.
Can you believe it?
As if it was his right!
He's done very well
with the horse, Dave.
So? You think he's entitled
to a half-share?
Well, people will think you're being
pretty unfair if you don't offer.
What the hell do I care
what people think?
Where were all these people
when I was 11 years old
and walked halfway across Europe?
Nobody lifted a goddamn
finger to help me.
Would it be wise to change trainers?
Harry's had a lot of success.
Alright, I'll offer him half share
but he's gonna pay me
good money for it,
whether he likes it or not.
That ointment you're using,
it's making his heel worse.
I know what I'm doing.
Is he getting any better?
Well, what does this mean
in terms of the horse's future?
Mightn't have a future.
Wait a minute. Harry.
A cracked heel can't stop
a horse from racing.
Can it?
I'm afraid so, Dave.
Happens all the time.
A man would be a fool to pay 20,000
for a share in the big fella now.
Don't you think 20,000 is a bit
too much to ask Harry to pay?
He didn't pay 20,000,
he paid 4,000.
To tell you the truth,
I was lucky to get that.
The horse is lame.
Could be washed up, finished.
Oh, Dave.
Phar Lap, Phar Lap!
No future, huh?
Nothing can stop him.
Weight could stop him.
Weight could stop a train.
No Phar Lap! Phar Lap punts are off!
And now we see this
ridiculous sight of the two horses.
Phar Lap and Chide.
Phar Lap is just so much better.
Chide is flat out,
now let Phar Lap go
and it's little more
than an exercise gallop.
And Phar Lap wins...
No more. You can close the bag.
No more bets, punters.
I've had enough of Phar Lap.
He's getting as much weight
as any other horse has ever got.
He's not any other horse.
He's a freak and should
be weighted accordingly.
The weight's making
no difference to Phar Lap.
He's drawn away for a great win.
He can't carry more weight, Lachlan.
There'd be a huge outcry.
We're here to further
the interests of racing.
And the mighty champion
has forged to the lead,
and despite his crushing weight,
Phar Lap is racing
on to a gallant win.
That run bloody nearly
killed him today!
- He's alright.
- He's not alright, Harry.
I give you fair warning -
I've never had a horse
drop dead under me yet
and I don't want the first
one to be Phar Lap.
Dave, I'd like you
to meet Jim Crofton.
- Jim.
- Dave.
- Quite a horse you got there.
- Yeah, thanks.
He barely won by a whisker today.
It's a wonder he could run at all
with all the weight they put on him.
If you want my candid opinion,
I think it's criminal.
Jim runs the Agua Caliente
Racecourse in Mexico.
Oh, yes. Yeah.
I'll level with you, Dave.
We're organising a really
big race down there.
We want your horse.
We'll pay all your expenses,
of course.
$100,000 stake.
Richest race in history.
He seemed to be struggling
to win today.
Apart from all the weight, he's got
a crook heel and a bad cold.
Oh, Tommy.
His pulse is still racing.
Well, why did Mr. Telford enter
him if he's got a cold?
Oh, he enters him for everything
and trains him to death as well!
He needs the money
to keep Braeside going.
He's pretty obsessed
with Braeside, isn't he?
Oh, he's mad!
He bought another
10 yearlings last week,
and none of them look
any good to me.
Don't worry about it.
I'll talk to Dave.
I shouldn't have said
anything, Mrs. Davis.
I can understand how you feel.
You'll be right, Red.
You'll be right.
Did you ever go and see Emma?
No. Heard she was going
around with another bloke.
Oh, Tommy, you can't
give in like that.
Go and see her - and make
your intentions clear.
Go on. Propose.
Yeah. Reckon I might.
G'day, Emma.
Tommy! What are you doing up here?
I got a present for you.
I want you to marry me.
I don't know what to say.
Don't say anything. Put it on
your finger before you lose it.
I thought you were never
gonna get round to it.
Nice big smile.
OK, mums and dads now, please.
Cashy, Ian, what are you
two doing up here?
The boss sent us up here, Tommy.
The big fella's fretting
and won't eat.
He says you gotta come
back straightaway. Now.
But... what about Emma?
What about the honeymoon?
There's no time, mate.
Bobby's real bad.
Come on, we've got a car
across the street.
Wait a minute.
I've gotta tell her.
You pair of bastards!
Congratulations, mate. Good on ya.
Well, that's the end of Phar Lap.
They've given him 10 stone 10
for the Melbourne Cup.
What are they trying to do,
kill him?
If they have to.
Has any horse ever carried that
much weight in a 2-mile race?
Nowhere near it.
I'm a tolerant man,
Jack, as you know,
but finally I'm forced
to the conclusion
that McKinnon and his cronies
are a pack of pricks.
Maybe Mr. Davis won't let him run.
Yes, he will.
He wants the gold cup.
Telford got it last year...
...and he won't pull him out
because he needs the money.
Even the papers are saying
if he runs, it could finish him.
They're right.
It'll kill him.
Everyone says so.
Telford's getting a stack of mail
begging him to pull Bobby out.
You can bet your life
he won't take a bit of notice.
Keep on at him.
He just won't listen.
Then make him listen, Tommy.
Don't start again.
He's running and that's final.
You'll kill him!
I'll kill him? Bull!
That bloody horse is killing me.
Letters, phone calls, press,
telegrams - cranks abuse me.
Never had a minute's
peace since I got him.
Don't you care what happens to him?
Nothing's gonna happen to him.
You're the one who's gonna have
to face your conscience if it does.
It's not just up to me.
Davis wants that cup.
He can forget about that.
Boss, you know there's
no way he'll win it.
Oh, you're probably right.
No horse could win over
two miles carrying that weight.
So, if Mr. Davis agrees to scratch
him, will you go along with it?
I suppose I'll have to.
It's the only way
you'll give me any peace.
He won't win it, Mr. Davis.
I don't understand why
you're so worried.
If there's too much weight on him,
it'll slow him down
and he won't win, OK,
but you're talking as though...
He'll bust a gut trying,
Mr. Davis. Really.
I know him.
Kid, come on, you wanna do
me a favour? Cut the violins.
Mr. Davis, why do you think
he got up last week,
when he was crook and still won?
Why do you think Jim Pike's
never had to use the whip?
He was in a terrible state
after the race, Dave.
He'd still try and win
if his legs were cut off.
Mr. Davis, I know how much
you want to win the cup...
Not just the cup. We have
an obligation to the public.
He can still keep winning for years
in weight-for-age where they
can't handicap him out of it.
You're putting his whole
future at risk.
Tommy knows the horse
better than anyone.
Alright, alright, alright.
It's alright with me.
But you're still gonna have to get
Harry to agree, and that is...
He already has.
Ah, Davis.
It was good of you to come
at such short notice.
I'll get straight to the point.
There's a strong rumour going around
that your horse is to be
scratched from the cup.
His name is Phar Lap.
- Is it true?
- Yes.
Would you mind telling me why?
Because you've given him
an impossible weight to carry.
You mean the handicappers?
No, I meant you.
Are you implying, Mr. Davis, that we
try and influence the handicappers?
I won't even bother
to answer that charge.
You realise, of course,
that under our rules,
you can't scratch a horse
without a good reason.
We have it on very good advice
that Phar Lap could be permanently
incapacitated if he runs.
Nonsense. We've been assured that
the horse is in no danger whatsoever.
Wait a minute. Excuse me.
Let me understand this.
Are you ordering me to run him?
- I'm requesting you very strongly.
- Oh, I see.
If we find he's been
scratched without good cause,
we can ban you and any horse
you're associated with
from ever racing in this State again.
Do you mind repeating that?
The race-going public
are expecting your horse to run...
His name is Phar Lap.
Horse's name is Phar Lap.
And I don't see why two owners
with a grudge against the
handicappers and the VRC
should deprive them of that.
I see.
You put a ton on his back
so that he can't possibly win,
but you want him there
to draw the crowds.
Very smart.
I'm acting in the best
interests of racing.
Well... you've finally done it,
haven't you, now, McKinnon?
If we scratch him,
he's barred from racing
and if we run him, there's a very
good chance of his breaking down,
and either way, you and your
cronies win it all, don't you?
I don't think there's any purpose
in prolonging this conversation.
No, there really isn't.
Take it easy today, alright?
Don't go busting your boiler.
He'll be alright, Tom.
If I see he's gone, I won't push him.
Thanks, Pikey.
And here's Phar Lap, number one,
in line for his second Melbourne Cup
being led out onto the track.
They're off!
And White Nose was one
of the first to jump out,
with Phar Lap beginning well.
St Mary away quickly
and so also is Koomela.
He's prominent but just
in behind is Carry On.
And then Concentrate, a bit further
back in the field, Madstar.
They're racing down
the straight for the first time,
and White Nose in charge,
leads by a length and a half.
Moving up on the outside, Koomela
is second, then Second Wind,
and Phar Lap running over on the
inside as they pass the judge
and go towards the side
of the track...
Coming down past the '3' now,
and White Nose on the
inside is still in front.
He's been taken by Second Wind,
and here comes the mighty Phar Lap.
Phar Lap is coming up quickly now,
behind White Nose,
Phar Lap is trying to bridge
the gap with White Nose.
Phar Lap on the outside,
coming up with White Nose.
Second Wind and Shadow King
on the left.
White Nose is holding Phar Lap.
This is incredible, he's struggling
under his big weight.
Phar Lap is starting to weaken,
it's White Nose and Second Wind...
Give it up, boy. It's alright.
...Phar Lap is dropping
out of the quick,
and White Nose is going for
the shot with Shadow King.
Phar Lap is dropping and White Nose
will come down to line before...
Excuse me.
- Does your offer still stand?
- Sure does.
Look, there's not
a horse in the world
could have won over that
distance carrying that weight.
I'm amazed he even finished
without breaking down.
Let's talk, alright?
- Too many risks.
- What risks?
The voyage over,
going into their winter,
dirt tracks, different feeding,
different styles of racing.
If you take him over there,
our quarantine laws
are gonna make it bloody hard
to bring him back home!
Alright, I grant you it's a risk.
But if it pays off, Harry,
we're gonna have more money than we
ever thought we'd have in our lives.
Alright. Take him.
Great. We're gonna have to be ready
to go in about three weeks, OK?
I'm not going.
Wait a minute. Wait a minute!
What do you mean you're not going?
I got 40 horses to look after here.
Three of them are coming up
for their first race.
You have to go.
Who's gonna train the horse?
- Tommy.
- Woodcock?
What the hell does
he know about training?
He's a good strapper.
Best I've ever had.
This is not what I'm asking you,
I said, "What does he
know about training?"
You're gonna have to take
him with you anyway,
the bloody horse won't even fart
unless Tommy tells him it's alright!
Harry, I can't go to
the States without you!
I'm not going!
I'm sick of the sight of him!
Bloody horse has given me
trouble since I got him.
You won't forget to write.
Of course not.
'Cause I wanna know what
the Americans talk like.
What they eat, how they dress.
What they think about Bobby.
- Yeah.
- You gotta write everything.
I'll try my best.
Oh, I know you'll be busy.
Gee, I'm gonna miss you, Tommy.
Hey, Bobby's on.
Train's ready to go.
Go on, I'm not looking.
All aboard!
Here, come on, Tommy!
The bloody train's going.
- I love you.
- Ta-ta.
Come on!
Suppose I'd better go, boss.
You're the boss now, Tom.
One more thing.
Don't be too soft on him.
Good luck, Tommy.
Here's trouble.
Well, Dave. What a surprise.
Alright, don't bullshit me now,
Crofton. What's going on?
Dave, this is our chairman,
Baron Long.
- You're looking good, Dave.
- I'm looking terrible.
I asked you something -
what's going on?
Mr. Davis, please don't
get alarmed...
The minute I stepped onto that wharf,
there was a reporter there asking me,
how do I feel about
Agua Caliente going broke?
It was a very nice welcome back
to my native land. Thank you.
Just calm down, Dave.
Look, we got a little
bit of a cash problem
due to the current
economic situation,
but once our publicity
machine gets rolling,
that horse of yours is gonna
pull us right out of the red.
If I had known you wanted
Phar Lap as publicity bait,
I never would have
put him on that boat.
Do you know the risks
I've taken getting him here?
Mr. Davis, don't panic.
The race will be run.
You'll get your $100,000,
plus your expenses, plus your bets
and everyone will end up happy.
Sure, by the time the race is run,
everybody in America is going to
be talking about your horse, Dave.
Welcome, gentlemen. Welcome.
May I introduce you to
the lucky owner of the world's
greatest galloper, Mr. Dave Davis.
Thank you again.
I'd like to start things off by
introducing Phar Lap's trainer,
Mr. Woodcock.
His strapper, Mr. Martin.
His vet, Mr. Nielsen.
His jockey, Mr. Elliot.
And this beautiful young lady
here is my wife, Bea.
Now, gentlemen,
any questions, please.
Is he really the world's
greatest galloper, Mr. Davis?
Well, without taking anything away
from your great American champions,
yes, I truly believe so.
Have you seen the field
he's up against?
Spanish Play, Joe Flores,
Cabezo, Reveille Boy.
Well, fine horses all of them,
but believe me when
I tell you, gentlemen,
they are no threat to Phar Lap.
Gentlemen, I have seen the
Red Terror race with my own eyes,
and I can sum it up
in one word - unbelievable.
Won't he have trouble acclimatising?
I don't think so. We've brought
everything to make him feel at home.
We've even brought his food
all the way from Australia.
Can we get a few pictures?
Certainly, gentlemen,
no problem at all.
Tommy, you wanna bring the horse
over here for the gentlemen...
That'll do. It's hot out here,
no good for the horse.
Tom, you wanna bring
the horse over here, please?
Don't forget to show his
hindquarters, gentlemen.
Please, it's very important.
Tom, where the hell are you going?
He came here to race,
not to do this bullshit.
The most powerful hindquarters in the
world, gentlemen. Get a good shot.
Tom, come back here, goddammit.
This is the National Press.
He should have been fed an hour ago.
Please, gentlemen. Plenty of
food and drink at the pavilion.
Did you hear that?
Looks like you've got
yourself a good trainer.
What is this Woodcock guy? The press
can't get near that animal of yours.
He's guarding him as if
he could eat straw and pass gold!
- We really need the publicity, Dave.
- I know.
He even sleeps with the horse.
What, is he some kind of pervert?
Well, can't you just... fire the guy?
If I did, the goddamned horse
would sit in his stall
for the next month and cry.
- When's he gonna gallop?
- In a week or two.
A week or two?
I'm bringing him up to peak slowly.
Harry would have been working
his butt off by now, you know?
I'm not Harry.
You're getting too smart for
your own good, you know that, kid?
I want that horse fit.
He will be.
Have you changed his shoes yet,
like the track vet advised you to?
He's been wearing the kind
he's got on all his life.
The track vet doesn't know
what he's talking about.
The track vet doesn't know
what he's talking about, huh?
You were told about the harder
surfaces over here, weren't you?
You were told he could
pick up a stone.
He'll have to be scratched.
No, he's gotta run.
I got him backed for a fortune.
Well, there's nothing I can do.
Half his hoof is hanging off.
Cut it away, Bill. It'll heal.
- Before the race?
- It'll heal.
Hold it!
Is there any chance?
It's possible.
Then do it.
Now, how are you gonna get him fit?
Walk him. I'll keep him moving all day.
You know something?
Harry must have been out of his mind
when he recommended you as a trainer.
And I must have been out
of my mind to listen to him.
- Mr. Davis.
- What?
Harry Telford used to train
that horse too hard.
If I can get him 90% fit,
his heart'll get him to the line.
The amount of faith you put
in that heart of his, kid,
it must be one hell of an organ.
There are rumours that the
horse is carrying a serious injury.
The horse is fit, totally fit.
Then why hasn't he been
out on the track?
What about all these rumours
that his hoof is cracked?
Gentlemen, Phar Lap has stepped
on a stone and bruised his foot.
- How badly?
- Wait a minute, wait a minute!
We put a mud pack on it
and we do not expect that
it will significantly interfere
with the horse's preparation.
- Then when are we likely to see...
- Thank you, gentlemen, that's it.
Well, it's healing.
Faster than I expected
but not fast enough for him to run.
He's gotta run.
If he wins here, I've got offers
for him from all over the States.
Bill, what about we try fitting bar shoes?
To support him across here
and take pressure off the split.
Well, has he worn them before?
- No.
- No, he hasn't.
Well, what do you think?
Well, it's worth a try.
But you won't be able
to give him anything
but light track work
right up to the race.
That's alright.
That alright, huh?
We're going into
the richest race in history
with a horse that's half-fit and lame.
That's wonderful.
Jimmy, what the hell
is happening with Phar Lap?
Baron, there's no problem.
There better not be. The whole
of the US is talking about the horse.
Did you see Walter Winchell's
column yesterday? Fantastic!
We're gonna have
our biggest crowd ever.
What the hell is he doing here?
A lot of money went on
to Reveille Boy yesterday.
Yeah, I bet a lot more went into
the pockets of certain jockeys too.
Is Phar Lap well guarded?
Oh, yeah. I got Frank and
the boys with him round the clock.
Problem is, by the time
Bert gets his story through,
we're not gonna have time
to get it on the streets.
What are we gonna do, then?
We have two versions ready to go.
If he wins, "Australian
wonder horse beats the world."
And if he loses?
"New Zealand horse fails in Mexico."
Harry... there's something
wrong with these figures.
There's 2,000 missing somewhere.
Yeah, I had a bet.
On Phar Lap?
No, on one of my colts
on Saturday. He lost.
Harry, you never bet.
I did and he lost.
Harry, if you're going to start
gambling our money away,
I'd like to be told.
We're in worse debt now than
we've ever been, do you realise that?
Phar Lap will win.
What if he doesn't?
He'll win at Caliente.
And he'll win everywhere
else he races.
For years, I've kidded myself
that I made that horse.
Truth is, he would've been a
champion no matter who trained him.
I've got 20 colts out there with
bloodlines as good
or better than his
and I've trained them
all exactly the same.
Every one's a dud.
He's a freak.
Dave, if your horse wins today,
get him out of here quickly
and have him guarded from here on in.
What are you talking about?
It's just that...
the big syndicates here
have racing pretty well organised.
Now, the last thing they want is
a horse coming in from the outside
who wins everything
and can't be bought.
I'll start worrying
about that if he wins.
But first, he's gotta win.
Just... keep him clear
of the pack, that's all.
Oh, there's a rumour going around
that some of the jockeys
have been paid
to keep him boxed in on the rails.
Look, Dave, if something's
good, that's OK.
But if something's too good,
it upsets the whole system.
Be careful, eh?
Ladies and gentlemen,
for your information,
the horses for the 13th
race on the program
are now in the walking ring.
Now, listen to me closely.
I want you to take him
out to the front of the bunch
right from the start - they're gonna
try to box you in on the rails...
He can't start fast, it'll put
too much strain on the hoof!
I said, he starts fast
and that is an order!
Alright, now don't forget, Billy.
You take him out front,
you take him out fast.
Not now, not now, sir, please. Do
me a favour. I'll talk to you later.
Billy, hold him back at the start.
Take him out wide and
go right 'round the outside.
Who's giving the orders
round here, you or Davis?
Me. Hold him back and take him wide.
I'll have to cover a hell
of a lot of extra ground.
Billy, do what you're told.
You'll get there.
What if the hoof goes?
Pull him up straightaway.
Ladies and gentlemen,
the race you've all been waiting for,
the Agua Caliente Handicap,
is next on the program.
Alright, me old mate.
Get out there and show 'em.
The horses have
reached the post.
They're ready to start
the Agua Caliente Handicap.
Good And Hot from the inside,
with jockey Morgan,
then Scimitar, Spanish Play,
Reveille Boy is in post four,
Bahamas with jockey John Longden
starting from post
position number five
and the second choice this afternoon.
Joe Flores is next,
then comes Dr. Freeland.
Phar Lap is in post
position number eight
followed by Marine
and Cabezo is on the outside.
We're ready at the start
of the Agua Caliente Handicap.
Marshall Cassidy ready to send this
fine field of gentlemen on their way
for a distance of 1.25 miles.
Get ready, gentlemen.
And go!
And they're off.
Phar Lap on the outside off
slowly, that's Phar Lap last.
And on the front end, there goes Joe
Flores, charging up to take the lead
as Johnny Longden moves Bahamas
on the outside into second spot.
Far back, Phar Lap is the trailer.
Off slowly, pushing Phar Lap.
I'll kill you, Woodcock!
So help me God, I'll kill you!
Joe Flores showing
the way by half a length.
Bahamas is in second spot...
Hold him, Billy.
Cabezo is next,
with Reveille Boy between horses.
Marine follows and after
that it's Dr. Freeland,
Scimitar, Spanish Play
and Phar Lap is the trailer.
It looks like the Australian champion
is not gonna run his race today.
As the field moves
to the clubhouse turn,
Joe Flores on the inside...
Alright, not yet.
On the outside,
Bahamas and Johnny Longden
charging up to challenge early...
Now Reveille Boy
finds room between horses for it.
Cabezo is next, after that...
Right round 'em, Bob. That's it.
Scimitar, Spanish Play
and Phar Lap on the outside
begins to close round.
There goes Phar Lap
charging up on the outside.
Bahamas on the inside
now takes the lead...
That's my Bobby boy!
Phar Lap on the outside is flying!
There goes Phar Lap!
Phar Lap charging up
quickly on the outside,
Joe Flores is third,
Reveille fourth...
It's Phar Lap taking the lead!
I've never seen a horse
move so fast in two furlongs!
On the inside,
it's Joe Flores and Bahamas.
Second spot, it's Reveille Boy
moving between horses.
It's Phar Lap showing the way
by a length and a quarter...
Whoa, that's the champion.
It appears that he's faltering,
jockey pulling up.
- He's having trouble.
- Watch behind ya!
As Phar Lap is pulling up,
Reveille Boy charges up on
the outside now to take the lead.
On the inside, it's Phar Lap,
on the outside, Reveille Boy...
Now take him home! Take him home!
Reveille Boy on
the outside, two horse race!
Phar Lap on the inside,
Reveille Boy on the outside
and they're coming to the line,
Phar Lap holds the lead...
It's Phar Lap, the winner!
Mr. Telford?
Mr. Telford, can you have a few
words with me about the tragedy?
Leave me alone.
Well, why is it, do you think,
that there's been this incredible
reaction to Phar Lap's death?
After all, he was just a horse.
He wasn't JUST a horse!
He was the best.