SPIRIT OF MIDNIGHT came to the
Celebration in 1959 and in a class of 52 two year-olds, won second
SHADOW'S HEADMAN. In 1962 he came back to Celebration
and won third behind
MACK K's HANDSHAKER
EBONY MASTERPIECE, both future World Grand Champions. In 1963, SPIRIT won third
in the Aged Stallion Class behind
SUN'S DELIGHT and
both future World Grand Champions.
never did win the Grand Championship, he did furnish his trainer,
Steve Hill with some pleasant moments. One such incident involved
Steve's close friend Pluck Miller. As Steve remembered the incident
he, Steve, was riding SPIRIT at the barn when Pluck Miller drove up.
Like most horsemen Pluck had some suggestions to offer as to the
proper training routine. Pluck yelled out, "Steve, flat walk the
horse, you hold him too tight, let him relax."
Steve knew some
things about SPIRIT that Pluck didn't know. "I had a big long bit on
him and it was already bent straight. I had two curbs on him so if
one broke he couldn't take to the woods, so I said, "Get on him
Pluck, he's working good now, show me how to ride him."
Pluck liked the idea and replied, "Yeah, let me ride him." Pluck was
anything but an amateur when it came to riding horses, having ridden
most of his adult life. The thing was, Steve didn't tell Pluck to
hold his feet away from SPIRIT.