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Q&A With Secretariat’s Otto Thorwarth

Jan 20, 2011

Professional jockey Otto Thorwarth plays Ronnie Turcotte in Disney’s Secretariat. We got the incredible opportunity to ask Otto some questions about his experiences on the race track and the movie set! Plus, he gives his tips on how to get into horseback riding!

Kidzworld: How does being a jockey in real life differ from playing one in a movie?

  • Otto: Luckily there wasn’t a difference. The Randall Wallace, the producer, was very keen on making sure the movie accurately portrayed real life horse racing, jockeys, races, stables, etc. So I got to just play myself which was the perfect role!

Kidzworld: Was this your first time acting?

  • Otto: This was my first time acting yes.

Kidzworld: How did they get the actual racing shots for the movie? How did the cameras keep up with the horses?

  • Otto: The film producers had a huge bulletin board with color coded pins for each horse that would advise us as to where we needed to be stationed for each shot. They would watch the old races on tape and then study exactly where the horses were stationed to make sure we did the same. They even measured how many feet we needed to be away from each other. We had to do a few takes for some scenes. The cameras were on trucks that ran in between and/or next to us. That was also difficult and a little distracting at moments for the jockeys and horses alike.

Kidzworld: What’s the most exciting horse race, in your opinion, and why?

  • Otto: My favorite horse races were the ones with “Easy Goer” and “Sunday Silence” from the 1989. The only other one that ranks high up there would be Zenyatta winning the breeders cup classic in 2009.

Kidzworld: How do you become a professional jockey? Any recommendations for kids that want to try out horseback riding/racing?

  • Otto: I did it the hard way. I started at the bottom and worked my way up. I started as a hot walker, then moved up to a groomer and then eventually made it as a jockey. My advice/recommendations to kids today who want to get into racing is to look into Chris McCarron’s jockey school in Kentucky. I highly recommend it. I’ve seen some great kids come out of there and they are very knowledgeable and well-trained. It’s amazing.
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loverpets

loverpets wrote:

he is really good in the movie.. trust me i saw the movis :D
commented: Sun Jan 23, 2011

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LAZY778
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I vote for the Legend of Korra. :3
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katerine46
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Neron
Neron posted in TV Shows:
"LAZY778" wrote: "Neron" wrote: I like The Legend Of Korra slightly better because that show took risks that were hardly taken in a show of its kind. It included a lot of mature themes and it really connects with today's older youth. You mean violence wise? Not just that, but the show tells the stories of the characters finding themselves. Take Asami for example. A lot of people have a late relative and another relative involved in some kind of trouble. She had her relationships AND family business to take care of, which relates to some of today's youth who feel like they have the whole world on their shoulders. They're starting to have to take responsibility for things they can hardly manage, and seeing the triumph of a character like Asami is truly inspiring. Her mother's dead, her father's in prison, her boyfriend was stolen from her, and her business nearly failed. But she did not give up, which sends a positive message to today's generation of teens.
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-Gwen42--
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