Maryjean Wall, who retired in June after 35 years as racing writer for the Lexington Herald-Leader is this week's guest on Talkin' Horses. Submit your questions for the July 2, noon eastern time chat here. On her final day of writing for the newspaper, she was at Belmont Park covering the Belmont Stakes and Big Brown’s failed attempt at winning the Triple Crown. During her first year on the beat, 1973, she came in with a winning Triple Crown: Secretariat’s. She is a winner of three Eclipse Awards.
Wall has moved on to finishing her dissertation for a Ph.D. in American History, a study that looks at the horse industry in the decades following the Civil War. She plans to teach at the university level. She also has set up a web site, Maryjeanwall.com, that will focus on the horse in history and literature, as well as offering occasional articles on various breeds of horses.Wall has participated in Thoroughbred racing in a variety of roles, from groom to assistant trainer to pony person, while seeing many changes in the sport. She has also trained and ridden her own Arabian horses in dressage.
Her career as a racing journalist also went through many changes. The craft went from typewritten stories to articles filed by wireless on the Internet. One of the last of the full-time racing writers for a general-interest newspaper, she also witnessed the decline in racing coverage across Canada and the United States. It is on this note that she invites readers' questions on Talkin’ Horses.