November 1958: the National Horse Show at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Into the rarefied atmosphere of wealth and tradition comes the most unlikely of horses - a drab white former plough horse named Snowman - and his rider, Harry de Leyer . . . Harry first saw Snowman on a truck bound for the slaughterhouse. He recognized the spark in the eye of the beaten-up nag and bought him for eighty dollars. On Harry's modest farm, he began to teach Snowman to be a show-jumper. The Eighty Dollar Champion is the dramatic and inspiring rise to stardom of an unlikely duo. One show at a time, against extraordinary odds and some of the most expensive thoroughbreds alive, the pair climbed to the very top of the sport of show jumping. Their story captured hearts wherever they went - a story of unstoppable hope, inconceivable dreams and the chance to have it all. They were the longest of all longshots - and their win was the stuff of legend.
Elizabeth Letts is the award- winning author of two novels, Quality of Care and Family Planning, and one children's book, The Butter Man. Quality of Care was a Literary Guild, Doubleday Book Club, and Books- A- Million Book Club selection. An equestrian from childhood, Letts represented California as a junior equestrian, and was runner- up in the California Horse and Rider of the Year competition. She currently lives with her husband and four children in Baltimore, Maryland.