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The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt

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Bonfire, the Black Stallion’s colt who is a champion harness racer, is in training for the biggest race of his career: the Hambletonian. But a routine practice race turns disastrous in a collision of wood, metal, horses, and jockeys. Bonfire escapes unharmed, but is spooked and refuses to race. Alec Ramsey, the owner of the Black, witnesses the crash and is determined to s Bonfire, the Black Stallion’s colt who is a champion harness racer, is in training for the biggest race of his career: the Hambletonian. But a routine practice race turns disastrous in a collision of wood, metal, horses, and jockeys. Bonfire escapes unharmed, but is spooked and refuses to race. Alec Ramsey, the owner of the Black, witnesses the crash and is determined to see that Bonfire follow in the winning footsteps of his world-famous sire.


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Bonfire, the Black Stallion’s colt who is a champion harness racer, is in training for the biggest race of his career: the Hambletonian. But a routine practice race turns disastrous in a collision of wood, metal, horses, and jockeys. Bonfire escapes unharmed, but is spooked and refuses to race. Alec Ramsey, the owner of the Black, witnesses the crash and is determined to s Bonfire, the Black Stallion’s colt who is a champion harness racer, is in training for the biggest race of his career: the Hambletonian. But a routine practice race turns disastrous in a collision of wood, metal, horses, and jockeys. Bonfire escapes unharmed, but is spooked and refuses to race. Alec Ramsey, the owner of the Black, witnesses the crash and is determined to see that Bonfire follow in the winning footsteps of his world-famous sire.

30 review for The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt

  1. 4 out of 5

    Melody

    Old men. This book is mostly about old men. Also horses, of course, and racing. But the heart of it is the old men who know the way things are done, and old men in opposition to one another, and old men trying to help young men despite the young men being kinda jerks. I love Henry Dailey, the irascible old git. The moment when Si takes his teeth out is pure gold. And of course Bonfire is a dream colt. Alec's not perfect here, and he learns some things- though I'm not sure I've ever met a young m Old men. This book is mostly about old men. Also horses, of course, and racing. But the heart of it is the old men who know the way things are done, and old men in opposition to one another, and old men trying to help young men despite the young men being kinda jerks. I love Henry Dailey, the irascible old git. The moment when Si takes his teeth out is pure gold. And of course Bonfire is a dream colt. Alec's not perfect here, and he learns some things- though I'm not sure I've ever met a young man so humble and ready to be steered. As always, pulse-pounding race scenes.

  2. 4 out of 5

    CLM

    It is really embarrassing that I read this entire book without realizing the colt was not in a bad mood but was, in fact, being trained for harness racing. In my defense, I do recall that it was skittish and didn't want to race so probably *was* quite cranky. It is really embarrassing that I read this entire book without realizing the colt was not in a bad mood but was, in fact, being trained for harness racing. In my defense, I do recall that it was skittish and didn't want to race so probably *was* quite cranky.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kensie Linton

    The main characters are Alec Ramsay and Bonfire. Bonfire is a blood bay colt. Alec is a tall thin jockey that is driving Bonfire throughout the book because of what happened to Tom Messenger, Bonfire's original jockey and trainer. Most of this book takes place in Goshen, NY. The beginning of this book takes place at Roosevelt Raceway. The problem begins when Tom and Alec are doing their morning workout, when all of a sudden Bonfire swerves and throws Tom onto the track. Alec tried so hard to avo The main characters are Alec Ramsay and Bonfire. Bonfire is a blood bay colt. Alec is a tall thin jockey that is driving Bonfire throughout the book because of what happened to Tom Messenger, Bonfire's original jockey and trainer. Most of this book takes place in Goshen, NY. The beginning of this book takes place at Roosevelt Raceway. The problem begins when Tom and Alec are doing their morning workout, when all of a sudden Bonfire swerves and throws Tom onto the track. Alec tried so hard to avoid hitting Tom. Alec and his horse went over Tom's legs and fractured his upper thigh. Tom then was rushed to the hospital and had to have surgery. They were about to fly Bonfire back to Coronet, but then Henry showed up and wanted to help the colt. So then Henry had to call Jimmy to get his permission to train the colt. Finally, Jimmy gave them permission. After a few days they drove Bonfire over to Goshen, NY. Then they started building up Bonfire's stamina for the Hambletonian race just a week ahead of him. When it came to the day of the race, Bonfire was ready to go. When it came to the point when they had to get in their post positions, Bonfire was placed in the 6th post position. A good spot out of the 18 horse field. In the first heat Bonfire lost and got placed in the 17th post position. They were bummed, but they were going to try hard to get out in front of the field. At the end of the third heat Bonfire and Bear Cat had to stay on the track. The track officials had to see the finishing photo to see who had won the race. Bonfire and Alec had won! Bonfire had won by a nose! They still had to run a 3rd heat and win to win the Hambletonian. In the 3rd heat they were placed in the 1st pole position because that is where they finished in the heat before. The race for the 3rd heat had started! This was the last heat of the Hambletonian! They had to win. They were in the middle of the race, Bonfire about to make his move, when all of the sudden Princess Guy swerved over and cut Bonfire off. But, that wasn't about to stop Alec and Bonfire. Alec and Bonfire were making their move! All they had to do now was get in front. They only had one horse to go! Bonfire passed the horse in front of him and made his finish for the wire! Bonfire ran all the way home! They had won the Hambletonian! The money that they had won would pay off Jimmy and Toms hospital bills. Henry and Alec's work there was done. They left Jimmy, Tom, and George alone with their colt and went back home. I really liked this book because it had a lot of problems with it and the excitement that I really like. The book was really entertaining, and that is also what I like about it. For those people that like horses and drama then you should recommend reading this book. It is very awesome!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt...I enjoyed seeing Bonfire, Jimmy Creech, George and Tom again, but I knew before opening the thing that if Henry and Alec showed up, there would be conflict. Just as I dreaded, there was. Apparently, Henry and Alec can do absolutely no wrong. I was okay with them being right about a few things, but why did they have to take over the whole show? And why did there have to be in-fighting? I would have enjoyed it a lot more if all of them had just worked together to The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt...I enjoyed seeing Bonfire, Jimmy Creech, George and Tom again, but I knew before opening the thing that if Henry and Alec showed up, there would be conflict. Just as I dreaded, there was. Apparently, Henry and Alec can do absolutely no wrong. I was okay with them being right about a few things, but why did they have to take over the whole show? And why did there have to be in-fighting? I would have enjoyed it a lot more if all of them had just worked together to help Bonfire and Tom get over their accident and face their fears. As it was, I just felt like Farley brought in Henry and Alec so he could prove (to himself or the audience, it isn't clear which) that they are the best no matter what the circumstances.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rena Sherwood

    This is one of the more enjoyable books in the series, although the Black does not appear. I liked Alec as a character better than Bonfire's boy, so I liked that Alec took over Bonfire's training and handling. I also appreciated some of the clashes of horse care in walking hot horses (or not) after I worked for a Standardbred racing stable for a horrible six-seven months. Unlike Alec, I couldn't make any changes to better the horses' lives. Although this is a great fantasy, there are many real-w This is one of the more enjoyable books in the series, although the Black does not appear. I liked Alec as a character better than Bonfire's boy, so I liked that Alec took over Bonfire's training and handling. I also appreciated some of the clashes of horse care in walking hot horses (or not) after I worked for a Standardbred racing stable for a horrible six-seven months. Unlike Alec, I couldn't make any changes to better the horses' lives. Although this is a great fantasy, there are many real-world problems with the book -- for example, Bonfire would never have been registered as a Standardbred because the Black is his sire. It's also outdated as harness racing has changed so much since this was first published. Not many races are run in heats any more -- or even run in the daytime.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tanja Berg

    Loved everything Black Stallion when I was a kid, but I read the books in Swedish so it's not always easy to know what they were in English. I particularly enjoyed this book - which I have read multiple times - when I a few years later became involved in the "trotting" world. For about ten years of my life I lived and breathed for everything "horse". Eventually I decided that I was better cut out for a desk job and went to college to get a business degree. Working with horses as a professional u Loved everything Black Stallion when I was a kid, but I read the books in Swedish so it's not always easy to know what they were in English. I particularly enjoyed this book - which I have read multiple times - when I a few years later became involved in the "trotting" world. For about ten years of my life I lived and breathed for everything "horse". Eventually I decided that I was better cut out for a desk job and went to college to get a business degree. Working with horses as a professional usually means gruelling and unpredictably long hours with little earnings. The hours I work tend still to be long, but I am duly compensated.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tania

    Another great adventure with Henry Daily and Alec Ramsay - this time they stray into harness racing to help an old friend and a son of The Black. The racing scenes are exciting and Alec has retained his big heart even with all he's been through in his relatively short life. This book fits in well with the series as a whole, and hasn't lost any of its magic through the years since it was released. It only loses one star from me for some of the conflict between characters which feels a little heav Another great adventure with Henry Daily and Alec Ramsay - this time they stray into harness racing to help an old friend and a son of The Black. The racing scenes are exciting and Alec has retained his big heart even with all he's been through in his relatively short life. This book fits in well with the series as a whole, and hasn't lost any of its magic through the years since it was released. It only loses one star from me for some of the conflict between characters which feels a little heavy handed.

  8. 4 out of 5

    VeeDawn

    I loved this book when I was young. When I finished it I remember showing it to my Dad and saying how good it was, raving on and on about it. So that evening Dad started reading it and stayed up late into the night, until he had finished it. (Which was a big deal because he had to get up very early to milk cows.) I was so thrilled that he had read and enjoyed the book I recommended. I should really give it 5 stars just for the memories!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Erinn Gillespie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I am so conflicted with this book ! Lets start with the cover , the edition that i have makes me frustrated . I mean were is the harness ? Does the artist even know what a blood bay looks like ? and what the hell is that horse doing ? trotting ? cantering? pacing ? just so unhappy with the artwork! then , lets move on to the story , i read the blood bay colt first and in that book tom was a mature horse crazy kid who respected his horse above all else . In this book he was described as an easily I am so conflicted with this book ! Lets start with the cover , the edition that i have makes me frustrated . I mean were is the harness ? Does the artist even know what a blood bay looks like ? and what the hell is that horse doing ? trotting ? cantering? pacing ? just so unhappy with the artwork! then , lets move on to the story , i read the blood bay colt first and in that book tom was a mature horse crazy kid who respected his horse above all else . In this book he was described as an easily intimated, immature boy that gives into pressure even at the expense of his horse . The Alec character come down as very judgmental of that only to do basically the same thing . It felt as though Walter was in a hurry to get rid of the characters that raised this horse only to put the "star" Alec in the story . Then to try to make up for it by having henry and Alec walk away after and let his "friends" take the glory .. I just didnt like that . This is one story that i am really not happy about .

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kristen (belles_bookshelves)

    "Loving horses means loving any kind of horse, regardless of type or breed or the use to which he is put." Sometimes I'm in the mood for a book about horse racing (well, okay, all the time), but rarely are their books about harness racing, something I only vaguely new of before the first Bonfire book. It's a very interesting sport - not as exciting as thoroughbred racing to me, personally, but I don't know that much about it. This book was a great introduction into a different kind of horse racin "Loving horses means loving any kind of horse, regardless of type or breed or the use to which he is put." Sometimes I'm in the mood for a book about horse racing (well, okay, all the time), but rarely are their books about harness racing, something I only vaguely new of before the first Bonfire book. It's a very interesting sport - not as exciting as thoroughbred racing to me, personally, but I don't know that much about it. This book was a great introduction into a different kind of horse racing that is not widely broadcast, unless you are apart of that world Very interesting.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sandra Gray

    I read so many of Walter Farley's Black Stallion books as a child and I can't remember any of them not being wonderful. I don't remember the details of this particular book and now, seeing the title, I got a little thrill. I read these in the 1970's and 1980's and they didn't seem dated or vintage even though many had been written years earlier. In fact, as an adult, I was surprised to find out the setting was much earlier than I had thought. Oh, to be able to read these again as a youngster and I read so many of Walter Farley's Black Stallion books as a child and I can't remember any of them not being wonderful. I don't remember the details of this particular book and now, seeing the title, I got a little thrill. I read these in the 1970's and 1980's and they didn't seem dated or vintage even though many had been written years earlier. In fact, as an adult, I was surprised to find out the setting was much earlier than I had thought. Oh, to be able to read these again as a youngster and re-experience all the adventure and mystery of Alex and the Black and feel that same thrill.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Susanna Grant

    loved every book in this series....my best friend Laura and I couldn't read them fast enough loved every book in this series....my best friend Laura and I couldn't read them fast enough

  13. 4 out of 5

    Katie Winkler

    Learned about harness racing by reading this book

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne Briggs

    To horse lovers the black stallion books are classics can not go wrong with them

  15. 5 out of 5

    Rose

    Alex enters the world of harness racing when Black's colt out of a trotter looses his driver. This book didn't have much Black in it, but it was still really, really good! Walter Farley is timeless and Alec Ramsey is my favorite. Alex enters the world of harness racing when Black's colt out of a trotter looses his driver. This book didn't have much Black in it, but it was still really, really good! Walter Farley is timeless and Alec Ramsey is my favorite.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt The Island Stallion Races The Black Stallion's Courage The Black Stallion Mystery The Horse-Tamer (all by Walter Farley) I stepped away from my re-read of this series as I just knew the two books listed first were coming up. Even as a child I never cared for the books without Alec and the Black. These two (Sulky Colt and Island Stallion Races) were even worse than I remembered. I wonder if The Island Stallion Races is what turned me off of sci-fi. The Black Stalli The Black Stallion's Sulky Colt The Island Stallion Races The Black Stallion's Courage The Black Stallion Mystery The Horse-Tamer (all by Walter Farley) I stepped away from my re-read of this series as I just knew the two books listed first were coming up. Even as a child I never cared for the books without Alec and the Black. These two (Sulky Colt and Island Stallion Races) were even worse than I remembered. I wonder if The Island Stallion Races is what turned me off of sci-fi. The Black Stallion's Courage was one of my faves in the series and I still liked it a lot, even if I found some of it pretty implausible. I actually enjoyed The Black Stallion Mystery a bit more this time around. The Horse-Tamer isn't really part of the series but is about the Black's trainer Henry Dailey as a boy. Kind of bland, really.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Missie

    I love this book, but here I am reviewing only the cover of this Yearling edition. What gait is the horse doing? He is supposed to be trotting, but the way his legs are drawn he appears to be doing some sort of variation on a counter- or cross-canter. He is also incredibly fat for a three-year-old racehorse. Why can't publishers read the books and research the subject matter a little before commissioning a cover illustration? Or reproduce the cover illustration on the original edition, which is I love this book, but here I am reviewing only the cover of this Yearling edition. What gait is the horse doing? He is supposed to be trotting, but the way his legs are drawn he appears to be doing some sort of variation on a counter- or cross-canter. He is also incredibly fat for a three-year-old racehorse. Why can't publishers read the books and research the subject matter a little before commissioning a cover illustration? Or reproduce the cover illustration on the original edition, which is a lovely head shot of Bonfire, the blood bay colt of the story.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Data

    This book has more than a bit of a commentary on harness racing - not very complimentary to harness racers. This is not a young children's book, as it needs to be taken for what it is. Let's just say harness racing is quite a bit different today. So I didn't feel like Bonfire (the sulky colt) got much credit, although the description of the activities surrounding harness racing is accurate and detailed. I really question the ability of anyone, even Alec Ramsay, to step in and drive in a race wit This book has more than a bit of a commentary on harness racing - not very complimentary to harness racers. This is not a young children's book, as it needs to be taken for what it is. Let's just say harness racing is quite a bit different today. So I didn't feel like Bonfire (the sulky colt) got much credit, although the description of the activities surrounding harness racing is accurate and detailed. I really question the ability of anyone, even Alec Ramsay, to step in and drive in a race with so little experience.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Cyndy

    This was the first book I read in the Black Stallion series. It got me hooked and I read almost all of the books in the series. I remember I read it in 6th grade for one of those reading programs (like Reading Is Fundamental or something like that).

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

    I raced through this series as a child. Of course, "The Black Stallion" was my favorite, and I read it a few times, but I waited eagerly for any of the books to return to my branch of the library so I could snap them up. I raced through this series as a child. Of course, "The Black Stallion" was my favorite, and I read it a few times, but I waited eagerly for any of the books to return to my branch of the library so I could snap them up.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Serena

    I enjoyed the characters, and their world and hope I get the chance to read the story again and/or to read more within the series. My Rating System: * couldn't finish, ** wouldn't recommend, *** would recommend, **** would read again, ***** have read again. I enjoyed the characters, and their world and hope I get the chance to read the story again and/or to read more within the series. My Rating System: * couldn't finish, ** wouldn't recommend, *** would recommend, **** would read again, ***** have read again.

  22. 5 out of 5

    April Helms

    I remember enjoying all of the Black Stallion books as a child. I don't recall much about this one, but if memory serves, Bonfire, a pacer, is injured and is afraid to race. I remember enjoying all of the Black Stallion books as a child. I don't recall much about this one, but if memory serves, Bonfire, a pacer, is injured and is afraid to race.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jacqueline

    Extra 1/2 star.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    Okay, maybe this is the one I own... I'll have to check... Okay, maybe this is the one I own... I'll have to check...

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    I really loved this one, which was about trotting, and dealing with a spooked horse.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lori

    The first book was the story of a boy and a horse, but the series grows with books on similar themes of overcoming adversity and animal/human bonding. Loved them as a kid.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    See the first book in the series for a full review.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jackie Brown

    There was not a Black Stallion book that I could ever put down. The stories are the best.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    It is an OK book. I sort of liked it.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Leaflet

    With Jimmy in the background, and Tom and George out of the way, Alec and Henry come to the rescue in the nick of time to give Bonfire the chance he deserves at the Hambletonian.

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