Norm's Nephew a multiple stakes winner on the track and a local star. He's not racing anymore but not slowing down much either.
He grew up at Emerald Downs, galloped in the mornings by trainer Jim Orr.
"The first time I worked him, the hair stood up on my neck," said Orr. "This horse could really run."
As a 3-three-year-old in 2005, Norm's Nephew had a ready-made fan base of Orr's wife Leona's track friends and co-workers. He made those fans happy with an early maiden victory and followed with an allowance score. Topping that, he won his first stakes try, the Pepsi Cola Handicap. He was three-for-four to begin his career.
He became the Washington Champion Three-Year-Old of 2005. In the Emerald Downs Derby, he outran Wasserman, Gins Majesty and Timeless Passion among the field of 12, everyone but winner Alexandersrun.
"He ran well and tried everytime," said Leona Orr. "He always did the best he could and second in the Derby isn't all that bad!"
His solid career included two appearances in the Mile, a Muckleshoot Tribal Classic victory and two wins in California before retirement from racing in 2009.
The Orrs wanted him to remain active and were particular in finding a new home.
Marianne Meeker, a semi-retired lawyer who was around horses in an earlier life became his new owner.
"Marianne has more tack for this horse than I had for 20," laughed Jim Orr. "She buys him everything."
"I was overwhelmed when I first saw him," said Meeker. "So big and fast but we liked each other from day one."
Norm's Nephew and Meeker have trained with John Watson at the Jon Tee Farm in Enumclaw.
"He's an excitable horse but wants to do things," said Watson. "We'll find his niche whether it be low level jumps or dressage."
"We have visitation rights," said Jim Orr. "He's in good hands and he's happy, that's all you can ask for."