The moving story of a tough little horse, a gifted boy, and a
woman ahead of her time.
The youngest jockey, the smallest horse, and an unconventional
heiress who disliked publicizing herself. Together, near Liverpool,
England, they made a leap of faith on a spring day in 1938:
overriding the jockey's father, trusting the boy and the horse that
the British nicknamed "the American pony" to handle a race course
that newspapers called Suicide Lane. There, Battleship might become
the first American racer to win England's monumental, century-old
Grand National steeplechase. His rider, Great Britain's Bruce
Hobbs, was only seventeen years old.
Hobbs started life with an advantage: his father, Reginald, was a
superb professional horseman. But Reg Hobbs also made extreme
demands, putting Bruce in situations that horrified the boy's
mother and sometimes terrified the child. Bruce had to decide just
how brave he could stand to be.
On the other side of the Atlantic, the enigmatic Marion duPont grew
up at the estate now known as James Madison's Montpelier--the
refuge of America's "Father of the Constitution." Rejecting her
chance to be a debutante, denied a corporate role because of her
gender, Marion chose a pursuit where horses spoke for her. Taking
on the world's toughest race, she would leave her film-star
husband, Randolph Scott, a continent away and be pulled beyond her
own control. With its reach from Lindbergh's transatlantic flight
to Cary Grant's Hollywood, "Battleship" is an epic tale of personal
drive to test one's own true worth.
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