Smart Little Lena

by Gala Nettles

© 2011 Gala Nettles
240 pages

978-0-9774290-3-5 (hard cover)

Price $39.95


From the Back Cover --

It was Sunday, April 8, 1984, a beautiful Easter morning in south Texas, the morning of the Masters Finals at the opulent Crawford Farms on the outskirts of Carrizo Springs. It was a glorious day for Smart Little Lena shareholders and for the CHA industry, a special day since the great stallion had once again made history. Already he was the first horse to win the CHA Triple Crown and that day he won the Masters, adding yet another jewel to his crown. No other horse had won as many major victories as Smart Little Lena. As cameras flashed in the arena, Don Crawford, the owner of Crawford Farms and mastermind behind the prestigious show stood visiting with his wife Laney and Karen and Bill Freeman and Antoinette and Hanes Chatham, the masterminds behind the Smart Little Lena syndicate. “As we talked about this impressive feat,” began Hanes, “Don told us, ‘I know it was special to have won the Triple Crown, but with this win, Smart Little Lena has done even more than that. He’s won the Grand Slam!’”  The Grand Slam. In baseball, it is a home run hit with all three bases occupied. In tennis or golf, it is the winning of all the major events. Grand Slam means achieving the highest rung on the ladder, it means becoming the crème de la crème of any profession. That April day in 1984, Smart Little Lena became the crème de la crème of the cutting horse industry. He became the Grand Slam Champion.

Gala Nettles was the best author for a book featuring Smart Little Lena’s show years since he was a subject she knew well. As a close friend to all of the Freemans, Gala has listened to the tales about Smart Little Lena as she enjoyed evening dinners in numerous Freeman’s homes, shared in the joys as well as the grieves of the family, and already written numerous articles and even books about them. Shorty Freeman chose her to write his biography, Just Shorty, which naturally paralleled the life of Doc O’Lena, the sire of Smart Little Lena. Bill Freeman chose her to work with him to produce the best selling instructional book Cutting, Training the Horse and Rider and she wrote the coffee table book Doc Bar, the sire of Doc O’Lena and the grandsire of Smart Little Lena. She is, indeed, a walking library on the Freeman dynasty and the horses they rode. In addition to personally knowing her subject matter, Gala also personally knows the cutting horse industry. Besides writing for numerous magazines and newspapers, she is married to cutting horse trainer and Hall of Famer Ronnie Nettles, providing hands-on experience in the very field in which Smart Little Lena succeeded. Gala received her BA. Degree from Baylor University and her M.A. Degree from Sam Houston State University. She has written 16 earlier books and eight instructional booklets.


Gala Nettles


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