Disney Nabs Rights to Penny Chenery’s Story


Walt Disney Pictures has nabbed the rights to the life story of Penny Chenery, owner of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat, reports Variety.

The film will be written by Mike Rich and produced by Mayhem Pictures’ Mark Ciardi and Gordon Gray. The trio have collaborated before in respective roles on inspirational sports films The Rookie, Miracle and Radio. Rich also scripted religious drama “The Nativity Story.”

Chenery, known as the “first lady of racing,” owned a thoroughbred breeding business that introduced Secretariat to the racing world. The dominant horse became the first Triple Crown winner in 25 years, taking the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. In 1974, Secretariat was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, and ESPN has listed him at 35th on its list of the 100 greatest athletes of the 20th century, one of only three nonhumans on the list.