||The year is 1864 and twelve-year-old Gabriel, a recently freed slave, is making a name for himself throughout the state of Kentucky. Blessed with a competitive spirit and a natural talent for racing horses, Gabriel is burning up the horse track and stacking up wins for horse owner Mister Giles.When Mister Giles asks him to ride Aristo, a powerful but unpredictable horse in the Saratoga Chase, Gabriel jumps at the chance to compete against some of the greatest jockeys in the North. But horse racing can be a nasty business when the stakes are so high. And Gabriel learns soon enough that being freed is not the same as being free. Not when your skin is black.Now Gabriel has more on his mind than winning the race. He has to keep his horse safe and fend off trouble. More than ever Gabriel misses his father, who has gone off to fight with the Union Army. Who else can he trust?