Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Silent Anvil: Elvis's Horseshoer Has Left the Building, But Not Our Lives

Mississippi/Tennessee horseshoer Lim Couch died this week. He was Elvis's horseshoer and a longtime officer of the American Farrier's Association. "Give me an Elvis look," I remember saying when I took this photo. And he obliged.

Lots of horseshoers have famous clients. Some like to brag about them. Some keep quiet about them. And some keep them very close to their hearts and, if you ask, will share their memories. When that happens, it's special.

That's how it was with Lim Couch. Lim died on Saturday at the age of 75. Most people in the farrier industry know him as a past president of the American Farrier's Association, a quiet and dignified southern gentlemen who probably served more time and in more capacities to that organization than almost anyone.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

California Chrome: Horseshoer Judd Fisher with a Horse on the Doorstep of History

Best of luck to California horseshoer Judd Fisher as he waits to find out if the horse with his shoes on will make history today by becoming the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978. Cross your fingers, rub a horseshoe, raise your glass--whatever happens, Judd has done a great job to get California Chrome to this point.  (Judd Fisher photo)
Read more about Judd Fisher and the special shoes that California Chrome wears.

Who Shod the Last Triple Crown Winner?

Sometimes a great event gives me a chance to dig into the archives and find some lost facts that deserve to have another chance to shine.

Triple Crown: Remembering Affirmed, the Horseshoer's Son, and the Horseshoer Himself

Whenever a big race is coming up, you'll see The Hoof Blog joyfully tweeting good wishes to jockey Rosie Napravnik. She is, after all, the horseshoer's daughter who made it to the big time. Her father, New Jersey shoer Charles Napravnik, often shows up in the winner's circle.

In fact, in the photo below of the Kentucky Oaks winner's circle when Rosie won on Untapable, you can clearly see Charlie, with his gray moustache and fedora hat, behind his daughter as she hoists the trophy over her head.

It's a lot of fun to be a Rosie fan, but she's not the first champion jockey to call a horseshoer "Dad". You'll see the original today in the Belmont Stakes coverage. He was the last jockey to win the Triple Crown.