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Summary

It was a cold and foggy February night in 1983 when a group of armed thieves crept onto Ballymany Stud, near The Curragh in County Kildare, Ireland, to steal Shergar, one of the thoroughbred industry's most renowned stallions. Bred and raced by the Aga Khan IV and trained in England by Sir Michael Stoute, Shergar achieved international prominence in 1981 when he won the 202nd Epsom Derby by 10 lengths - the longest winning margin in the race's history. The thieves demanded a hefty ransom for the safe return of one of the most valuable thoroughbreds in the world, but the ransom was never paid and Shergar's remains have never been found. 

In Taking Shergar: Thoroughbred Racing's Most Famous Cold Case, Milton C. Toby presents an engaging narrative that is as thrilling as any mystery novel. The book provides new analysis of the body of evidence related to the stallion's disappearance, delves into the conspiracy theories that surround the inconclusive investigation, and presents a profile of the man who might be the last person able to help solve part of the mystery. 

Toby examines the extensive cast of suspects and their alleged motives, including the Irish Republican Army and their need for new weapons, a French bloodstock agent who died in Central Kentucky, and even the Libyan dictator, Muammar al-Qadhafi. 

The book is published by The University Press of Kentucky. The audiobook is published by University Press Audiobooks.

©2018 Milton C. Toby (P)2019 Redwood Audiobooks

Critic reviews

"Toby has made an important contribution to horseracing's historical tapestry." (James C. Nicholson, author of The Kentucky Derby) 

"This is a book that will enthrall anyone who ever followed the story of Shergar...will introduce a whole new generation to a mystery that, sadly, may never be fully solved." (The Irish Field)

"A hard-to-put-down account of the day the world of Thoroughbred racing stopped in its tracks." (Mary Simon, three-time recipient of the Eclipse Award)

What listeners say about Taking Shergar

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Dreadful book

The only good thing about this book was that the narrator wasn’t to bad
There’s a lot wrong with this book
Firstly unless you have a in-depth knowledge of horse racing and breeding you won’t understand it
Secondly the constant American terms instead of English gets really annoying
Thirdly very little of the book actually deals with shergar you could learn more about the stealing of shergar just by doing a google search
Lastly it gives no new information and backs a Theory with very fact to prove it
Don’t waste a credit

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    2 out of 5 stars

Not a great listen

Story confusing to follow. Narration worse: accent inappropriate to the story and many mispronounciations.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-02-20

Bad Choice of Narrator

Why did they choose an American to narrate the story of the theft of a British racehorse in Ireland. So many mispronunciations of English and Irish place names and surnames detracted from the story significantly!

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  • Lmaris
  • 15-07-19

Badly told story & even worse narrator.

Mr Ferraro may be a good choice for Mickey Spillane type mysteries, but he was a bad choice here. He is unable to pronounce some common racing names like "Claiborne" (he says Clear-born). His gruff voice sounds bored most of the time, and tired.

The story of the horse, its owner, and the theft is an interesting one, but needs a better author and narrator. The author jumped all over the place in time, then from one crackpot conspiracy to another. Even after the actual criminals were identified, the author went on present other outlandish ideas, even to claim "remote viewing" was real. It is not.

Returned it with an hour left unheard because it was too painful to continue. A very good opportunity wasted by the author and narrator.