BoJack, when I was your age, I got sad. A lot. I didn't come from such a great home, but one day, I started running, and that seemed to make sense, so then I just kept running. BoJack, when you get sad, you run straight ahead and you keep running forward, no matter what. There are people in your life who are gonna try to hold you back, slow you down, but you don't let them. Don't you stop running and don't you ever look behind you. There's nothing for you behind you. All that exists is what's ahead.

—Secretariat, Later

Secretariat was a famous racehorse and the childhood hero of BoJack Horseman. He won the Triple Crown in 1973 and then months later committed suicide after being banned from competition for illegal betting, and learning of the death of his brother.

The Real Secretariat

Secretariat (March 30, 1970 – October 4, 1989) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse that, in 1973, became the first U.S. Triple Crown winner in twenty-five years. He set race records 43 years ago in all three events in the series – the Kentucky Derby (1:5925), the Preakness Stakes (1:53), and the Belmont Stakes (2:24) – records that still stand today.


Secretariat was a American Thoroughbred racehorse. He had scarlet red fur with a wavy orange mane. His nose and mouth are grey and he has a white streak on his snout that stops at the top of his nose. His racing uniform consists of a blue tank top with a white trim and a white "3" on the front, lighter blue shorts with white trim, and blue and yellow sneakers. While on the Dick Cavette Show and talking to Nixon he wears a tan suit which consists of a button down suit and dress pants with a lime green shirt, and a dark yellow tie with light yellow polka-dots, and brown loafers.

When he commits suicide, he has stubble on his mouth, and he wears a yellow long sleeved collared shirt and green pants, and he appears to be barefoot.


Secretariat, like BoJack, grew up in a troubled home and went through depression. However, he started running, which made him feel better, so he just kept running.

On May 19 of an unknown year, Secretariat loses his first race, and he thinks to himself in the locker room about how he might lose his scholarship. The same day, he learns that his father has died and was sent to the glue factory.

Sometime after this, however, he does become a famous race horse

In 1972, Secretariat meets with President Richard Nixon. Nixon is threatening to send Secretariat to fight in the Vietnam War. He pleads with Nixon not to be sent. In return for not going to Vietnam, Secretariat makes a deal with Nixon to send his brother, Jeffretariat, instead.

Later, Secretariat can be seen in a news interview using his celebrity status to promote the Vietnam War and Richard Nixon.

A year later, in 1973, Secretariat wins the Triple Crown and books an appearance on The Dick Cavett Showin July. There, he denies recent allegations that he bet money on his own races. He also addresses a fan letter from a young BoJack Horseman, who is 9 years old at the time. The letter says BoJack is a big fan of Secretariat and he wants to be like him. It also says that he gets sad sometimes and he spasms Secretariat what he should do when he gets sad. Secretariat replies that he was the same at his age, so he started running and it made him feel better. He tells him to just keep running, and to never look back and not let anyone get in his way, because all that exists is what's ahead. Unfortunately, BoJack does not get to hear Secretariat's response to his letter, because as he's watching the interview on TV his parents start having a loud argument, preventing him from hearing the answer.

One month later, on August 22, 1973, it is announced he is banned for life from competition for betting on his own races. At some point around this time he finds out that his brother, who took his place to fight in the Vietnam War, had perished in battle. Secretariat parks his car on the George Rogers Clark Memorial Bridge in Louisville, climbs up onto the railing and jumps, killing himself. He was twenty seven years old. This devastates BoJack Horseman, who mourns the loss of his deceased hero.

The Secretariat Movie

BoJack always wanted to play the part of Secretariat. In the 80's and 90's he was was expecting to win the role. He even beat Val Kilmer for the title role, but the film went into Development Hell, and never made it. According to BoJack, the Prefontaine movies came out around that time too, and audiences got tired of running.

In 2014, BoJack, after winning a Golden Globe for his Biography, began receiving more attention, and auditioned for the role of Secretariat, which by than was once again in development, with Lenny Turteltaub as producer, and Kelsey Jannings as director. He was initially beat by Andrew Garfield, but after he was injured, BoJack got the role.

The film was originally dark and gritty, but was eventually made into a family friendly film. Neither BoJack or Kelsey liked this, but Kelsey pretended not to care, until BoJack convinced her to go out with her, sneak into the Nixon Museum, and film the Nixon scene that was cut from the film, they do so with help from Todd Chavez, Mr. Peanutbutter, and Princess Carolyn.

With help from Kelsey, BoJack gives the best performance in his life, and ends up crying outside. Lenny finds out about this, and fires Kelsey, he is replaced by Abe D'Catfish, another director. Due to personal issues with his girlfriend Wanda Pierce, and being pressured by Abe to do re-shoots since BoJack had accidentally offended Abe, BoJack travels to Tesque, New Mexico and stays with his old friend Charlotte Moore. BoJack was replaced by a computer generated version of himself, he eventually returns. He is surprised when the film turns out actually good. It was released in 2015, and was very successful. BoJack hoped to win an Oscar, but he was not nominated.


Memorable Quotes

  • "BoJack, when you get sad, you run straight ahead and keep running forward, no matter what. There are people in your life that are gonna try to hold you back, slow you down, but you don't let them. Don't you stop running and don't you ever look behind you. There's nothing for you behind you. All that exists is what's ahead."


  • The real-life racehorse, Secretariat, lived until 1989, when he was euthanized after becoming afflicted with an incurable hoof condition. In the universe of the show, he died in 1973, at the age of 27, when really he was three years old at the time.
  • Diane Nguyen wrote his biography.
  • Character actress Margo Martindale has a role in the 2010 live-action Disney film Secretariat.
  • He was 27 years old at the time of his death, most likely a reference to the infamous 27 Club.

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