By Dale Yurong
Monday, June 23, 2014
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) –World Cup fever may have replaced Triple Crown fever but now one of the Valley’s favorite sons has returned.
California Chrome is enjoying a well-deserved vacation at Harris Farms in Coalinga. His Triple Crown bid ended with a loss at the Belmont Stakes but the Valley super horse took us all on an incredible ride.
California Chrome was led out of his barn for a leisurely walk and some fresh air and shade at Harris Farms.
This is where he was born and raised. This is where he will quietly spend the next month on vacation – grazing on the grass and clover he loves so much.
Chrome is oblivious to the horse racing frenzy he created.
Harris Farms CEO John Harris said, “He hadn’t been back for over a year so he got off the van and seemed to really know where he was. He’s a very settled intelligent horse.”
California Chrome was reunited on the ranch with his mom and his dad – the much bigger “Lucky Pulpit.”
The heel wound Chrome suffered when he grabbed a quarter at the Belmont Stakes has healed nicely.
John Harris said Chrome’s owners want to race him in the Breeder’s Cup in November.
Harris explained, “So giving him a month off now is a wise decision. You can pick up a few extra pounds, have him unwind a little bit and then come back better than ever.”
Trainer Per Antonsen was thrilled to have his prized pupil back.
Antonsen said, “He’s happy. He’s very happy. He eats good. He likes the attention. He got so much attention for six months.”
California Chrome’s presence puts everyone in a great mood here. His racing career is long from over. Chrome has just come home for a little rest and relaxation.
Antonsen said, “It’s pretty neat. You think back when he left he was a two year old in the springtime. You watch him all the time. All of a sudden he turns into that kind of horse and to watch those last three Triple Crown races with him and then watch him come off the van was a big thrill.”