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Secretariat (horse)

Secretariat (horse)

Overview
Secretariat was an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 Thoroughbred
Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...

 racehorse, that in 1973 became the first U.S. Triple Crown
United States Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing
In the United States, the "Triple Crown" is usually the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing, a series of three Thoroughbred horse races for three-year-old horses run in May and early June of each year consisting of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.While Daily Racing Form...

 champion in 25 years, setting new race records in two of the three events in the Series—the Kentucky Derby
Kentucky Derby
The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, United States on the first Saturday in May, capping the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. The race is one and a quarter mile at Churchill Downs. Colts and geldings carry...

 (1:59), and the Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

 (2:24)—records that still stand today.

Secretariat was sired by Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler was an American Thoroughbred Hall of Fame racehorse.Bred by the Wheatley Stable of Gladys Mills Phipps, Bold Ruler was foaled on April 6, 1954 at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky to Nasrullah and Miss Disco by Discovery...

 out of Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and broodmare. She was the dam of U.S. Triple Crown champion and Hall of Fame inductee, Secretariat ....

, by Princequillo
Princequillo
Princequillo was a Thoroughbred racehorse conceived in France and born in Ireland. He is known for his performances in long-distance races and his successes as a sire.-Background:...

. He was foaled at Meadow Farm in Caroline County
Caroline County, Virginia
Caroline County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of 2010, the population was 28,545. Its county seat is Bowling Green. Caroline County is also home to The Meadow stables, the birthplace of the renowned racehorse Secretariat, winner of the 1973 Kentucky Derby, Preakness and...

, Virginia
Virginia
The Commonwealth of Virginia , is a U.S. state on the Atlantic Coast of the Southern United States. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" and sometimes the "Mother of Presidents" after the eight U.S. presidents born there...

. Like his famous predecessor Man o' War
Man O' War
Man O' War, man o' war or manowar may refer to:* Man-of-war, a warship* Man of war for uses with this spelling - Places :...

, Secretariat was a large chestnut
Chestnut (coat)
Chestnut is a hair coat color of horses consisting of a reddish-to-brown coat with a mane and tail the same or lighter in color than the coat. Genetically and visually, chestnut is characterized by the absolute absence of true black hairs...

 colt
Colt (horse)
A colt is a young male horse, under the age of four. The term "colt" is often confused with foal, which refers to a horse of either sex under one year of age....

 and was given the same nickname, "Big Red." Secretariat's grand sire, Nasrullah, is also the great-great grand sire of 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew was an American Thoroughbred race horse who won the United States Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing in 1977, the tenth of eleven horses to accomplish the feat. He remains the only horse to win the Triple Crown while undefeated. In the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 U.S...

.

Owned by Penny Chenery
Penny Chenery
Helen Bates "Penny" Chenery Tweedy is an American sportswoman who bred and raced Secretariat, the 1973 winner of the Triple Crown...

, he was trained by Lucien Laurin
Lucien Laurin
Lucien Laurin was a French-Canadian jockey and Hall of Fame Thoroughbred horse trainer.-Life and career:...

 and mainly ridden by Canadian jockey Ron Turcotte
Ron Turcotte
Ron Joseph Morel Turcotte, CM is a Hall of Fame thoroughbred race horse jockey best known as the rider of Secretariat, winner of the U.S. Triple Crown in 1973....

, along with apprentice jockey Paul Feliciano (first two races), and veteran Eddie Maple
Eddie Maple
Edward Retz "Eddie" Maple is a retired American thoroughbred horse racing jockey. One of eight brothers and sisters, he was an older brother to jockey Sam Maple who won more than 2,500 races. He began riding horses at age 12 and won his first race as a professional at 17...

 (last race).
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Encyclopedia
Secretariat was an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 Thoroughbred
Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...

 racehorse, that in 1973 became the first U.S. Triple Crown
United States Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing
In the United States, the "Triple Crown" is usually the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing, a series of three Thoroughbred horse races for three-year-old horses run in May and early June of each year consisting of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.While Daily Racing Form...

 champion in 25 years, setting new race records in two of the three events in the Series—the Kentucky Derby
Kentucky Derby
The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, United States on the first Saturday in May, capping the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. The race is one and a quarter mile at Churchill Downs. Colts and geldings carry...

 (1:59), and the Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

 (2:24)—records that still stand today.

Secretariat was sired by Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler was an American Thoroughbred Hall of Fame racehorse.Bred by the Wheatley Stable of Gladys Mills Phipps, Bold Ruler was foaled on April 6, 1954 at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky to Nasrullah and Miss Disco by Discovery...

 out of Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and broodmare. She was the dam of U.S. Triple Crown champion and Hall of Fame inductee, Secretariat ....

, by Princequillo
Princequillo
Princequillo was a Thoroughbred racehorse conceived in France and born in Ireland. He is known for his performances in long-distance races and his successes as a sire.-Background:...

. He was foaled at Meadow Farm in Caroline County
Caroline County, Virginia
Caroline County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of 2010, the population was 28,545. Its county seat is Bowling Green. Caroline County is also home to The Meadow stables, the birthplace of the renowned racehorse Secretariat, winner of the 1973 Kentucky Derby, Preakness and...

, Virginia
Virginia
The Commonwealth of Virginia , is a U.S. state on the Atlantic Coast of the Southern United States. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" and sometimes the "Mother of Presidents" after the eight U.S. presidents born there...

. Like his famous predecessor Man o' War
Man O' War
Man O' War, man o' war or manowar may refer to:* Man-of-war, a warship* Man of war for uses with this spelling - Places :...

, Secretariat was a large chestnut
Chestnut (coat)
Chestnut is a hair coat color of horses consisting of a reddish-to-brown coat with a mane and tail the same or lighter in color than the coat. Genetically and visually, chestnut is characterized by the absolute absence of true black hairs...

 colt
Colt (horse)
A colt is a young male horse, under the age of four. The term "colt" is often confused with foal, which refers to a horse of either sex under one year of age....

 and was given the same nickname, "Big Red." Secretariat's grand sire, Nasrullah, is also the great-great grand sire of 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew was an American Thoroughbred race horse who won the United States Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing in 1977, the tenth of eleven horses to accomplish the feat. He remains the only horse to win the Triple Crown while undefeated. In the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 U.S...

.

Owned by Penny Chenery
Penny Chenery
Helen Bates "Penny" Chenery Tweedy is an American sportswoman who bred and raced Secretariat, the 1973 winner of the Triple Crown...

, he was trained by Lucien Laurin
Lucien Laurin
Lucien Laurin was a French-Canadian jockey and Hall of Fame Thoroughbred horse trainer.-Life and career:...

 and mainly ridden by Canadian jockey Ron Turcotte
Ron Turcotte
Ron Joseph Morel Turcotte, CM is a Hall of Fame thoroughbred race horse jockey best known as the rider of Secretariat, winner of the U.S. Triple Crown in 1973....

, along with apprentice jockey Paul Feliciano (first two races), and veteran Eddie Maple
Eddie Maple
Edward Retz "Eddie" Maple is a retired American thoroughbred horse racing jockey. One of eight brothers and sisters, he was an older brother to jockey Sam Maple who won more than 2,500 races. He began riding horses at age 12 and won his first race as a professional at 17...

 (last race). He raced in Chenery's Meadow Stable's blue and white checkered colors and his groom
Groom (horses)
A groom is a person who is responsible for some or all aspects of the management of horses and/or the care of the stables themselves. The term most often refers to a person who is the employee of a stable owner, but even an owner of a horse may perform the duties of a groom, particularly if the...

 was Eddie Sweat
Eddie Sweat
Edward "Eddie" Sweat was an American groom in Thoroughbred horse racing who was the subject of the 2006 book by Lawrence Scanlan titled The Horse God Built: Secretariat, His Groom, Their Legacy.-Career:...

. Secretariat stood approximately tall, and weighed 1175 pounds (533 kg), with a 75 inch girth, in his racing prime.

Background


The story of Secretariat began with the toss of a coin in 1968 between Christopher Chenery
Christopher Chenery
Christopher Tompkins Chenery was an American engineer, businessman, and owner/breeder of Thoroughbred horse racing's U.S. Triple Crown champion Secretariat....

 of Meadow Stables and Ogden Phipps
Ogden Phipps
Ogden Phipps was an American stockbroker, court tennis champion and Hall of Fame member, thoroughbred horse racing executive and owner/breeder, and an art collector and philanthropist...

 of Wheatley Stable
Wheatley Stable
Wheatley Stable was the nom de course for the thoroughbred horse racing partnership formed by Gladys Mills Phipps and her brother, Ogden L. Mills. The horses were raised at Claiborne Farm near Paris, Kentucky.-History:...

. The idea of a coin toss came from Phipps, the owner of Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler
Bold Ruler was an American Thoroughbred Hall of Fame racehorse.Bred by the Wheatley Stable of Gladys Mills Phipps, Bold Ruler was foaled on April 6, 1954 at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky to Nasrullah and Miss Disco by Discovery...

, and "Bull" Hancock
Arthur B. Hancock, Jr.
Arthur B. "Bull" Hancock, Jr. was a breeder and owner of thoroughbred racehorses at Claiborne farm in Kentucky. He acquired European horses to breed in the United States, in particular Nasrullah and Princequillo, and gained great standing in the racing world as a result.-Early life:Hancock was...

 of Claiborne Farm
Claiborne Farm
Claiborne Farm is a thoroughbred Horse breeding operation in near Paris, Kentucky. It was established in 1910, by Arthur B. Hancock, owner of Ellerslie Farm in Albemarle County, Virginia, and has been operated by members of his family ever since.-Owners:...

s as a way to get the very best mares for Bold Ruler, and when the toss went their way, to add well-bred fillies
Filly
A filly is a young female horse too young to be called a mare. There are several specific definitions in use.*In most cases filly is a female horse under the age of four years old....

 to their own broodmare band. Bold Ruler was considered one of the important stallion
Stallion
A Stallion is a male horse.Stallion may also refer to:* Stallion , an American pop rock group* Stallion , a figure in the Gobot toyline* Stallion , a character in the console role-playing game series...

s of his time. He had a fine balance between speed and stamina, having had a frontrunning style that lacked the stamina to go 1 miles; he finished fourth in the 1957 Kentucky Derby. After his racing career, Bold Ruler was retired to Claiborne Farms, but still was controlled by the Phipps family. This meant he would be bred mainly to Phipps' mares and not many of his offspring would find their way to the auction ring. Phipps and Hancock agreed to forgo a stud fee for Bold Ruler in exchange for getting to keep one of two foals produced by the mare he bred in successive seasons or two mares he bred in the same season. Who obtained which foal or even received first pick would be decided by a flip of a coin.

In 1968, Chenery sent two mares named Hasty Matilda and Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal
Somethingroyal was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and broodmare. She was the dam of U.S. Triple Crown champion and Hall of Fame inductee, Secretariat ....

 to Bold Ruler, and in 1969, a colt and filly were the result. In 1969, Hasty Matilda was replaced by Cicada, but she did not conceive. Only one foal
Foal
A foal is an equine, particularly a horse, that is one year old or younger. More specific terms are colt for a male foal and filly for a female foal, but these terms are used until the horse is age three or four. When the foal is nursing from its dam , it may also be called a suckling...

 resulted between Bold Ruler and Somethingroyal. As stated in the original agreement, the winner of the coin toss could pick the foal he wanted, but could only take one, while the loser would get the other two. Both parties assumed Somethingroyal would deliver a healthy foal in the spring of 1970. The coin toss between Penny Chenery and Ogden Phipps was held in the fall of 1969 in the office of New York Racing Association Chairman Alfred Vanderbilt II
Alfred G. Vanderbilt II
Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt II was a member of the prominent Vanderbilt family, a son of the first Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt who died a hero in the sinking of the RMS Lusitania. His mother, Margaret Emerson, was one of America's wealthiest women and most sought-after hostesses, operating at least...

, with Hancock as witness. Phipps won the toss and took the weanling
Weanling
A weanling is an animal that has just been weaned. The term is usually used to refer to a type of young horse, a foal that has been weaned, usually between the ages of 6 months and a year. Once a year old, the horse is referred to as a yearling.-References:...

 filly out of Somethingroyal, leaving Chenery with the colt out of Hasty Matilda and the unborn foal of Somethingroyal.

On March 30, at 12:10 a.m., Somethingroyal foaled a bright-red chestnut colt with three white socks and a star with a narrow blaze. By the time the colt was a yearling
Yearling (horse)
A yearling is a young horse of either sex that is between one and two years old. Yearlings are comparable in development to a very early adolescent, they are not fully mature physically, and while they may be in the earliest stages of sexual maturity, they are considered too young to be breeding...

, he was still unnamed. Meadow Stables' secretary, Elizabeth Ham, had submitted 10 names to the Jockey Club, all of which were denied for various reasons. Approval finally came with the 11th submission, a name Ham herself picked from a previous career association, Secretariat.

Two-year old season


On July 4, 1972, Secretariat finished fourth, beaten 1 lengths, in his first race at Aqueduct Racetrack
Aqueduct Racetrack
Aqueduct Racetrack is a thoroughbred horse-racing facility and racino in Ozone Park, Queens, New York. Its racing meets usually are from late October/early November through April.-History:...

 when he was impeded at the start, forced to take up on the backstretch and then could not make up the ground. After that loss, Secretariat then won five races in a row, including three important two-year-old stakes races, the Sanford Stakes
Sanford Stakes
The Sanford Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually during the third week of July at the Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York. A six furlong sprint race, the Grade II event is open to two-year-old horses....

 and Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga Race Course
Saratoga Race Course
Saratoga Race Course is a Thoroughbred horse racing track in Saratoga Springs, New York, United States. It opened on August 3, 1863, and is the oldest organized sporting venue of any kind in the United States. It is typically open for racing from late July through early September.-History:John...

, and the Futurity Stakes at Belmont Park
Belmont Park
Belmont Park is a major thoroughbred horse-racing facility located in Elmont in the Town of Hempstead in Nassau County, New York, on Long Island adjoining New York City. It first opened on May 4, 1905...

. In the Hopeful, he made a huge move, passing eight horses in 1/4 mile to take the lead and then drawing off to win by five lengths. He then ran in the Champagne Stakes at Belmont, where he finished first, but was disqualified and placed second for bearing in and interfering with Stop the Music
Stop The Music (horse)
Stop The Music was an American thoroughbred stallion racehorse. Owned and bred in Kentucky by the Greentree Stud, Inc., he was sired by Hail To Reason, out of the mare Bebopper, whose sire, Tom Fool, was the leading broodmare sire for 1965 and was inducted into National Museum of Racing and Hall...

, which was declared the winner.

Secretariat avenged that loss in the Laurel Futurity
Laurel Futurity
The Laurel Futurity is an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually in late November at Laurel Park Racecourse in Laurel, Maryland. Run over a distance of 1 1/16 miles on turf, at one time it was a Grade I stakes race on dirt, and one of the richest and most important races for two-year-old...

, winning by eight lengths over Stop the Music, and completed his season with a win in the Garden State Futurity
Garden State Futurity
The Garden State Stakes was an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually in mid November at the now defunct Garden State Park Racetrack in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. A futurity event for two-year-olds, it is sometimes referred to as the Garden State Futurity...

. Secretariat won the Eclipse Award
Eclipse Award
The Eclipse Award is an American thoroughbred horse racing award named after the 18th century British racehorse and sire, Eclipse. The Eclipse Awards, honoring the champions of the sport, are sponsored by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association , Daily Racing Form and the National Turf Writers...

 for American Champion Two-Year-Old Male Horse and, in a rare occurrence, two two-year-olds topped the balloting for 1972 American Horse of the Year honors with Secretariat edging out the filly
Filly
A filly is a young female horse too young to be called a mare. There are several specific definitions in use.*In most cases filly is a female horse under the age of four years old....

, La Prevoyante
La Prevoyante
La Prevoyante was a Canadian-bred Thoroughbred race horse elected to the Racing Halls of Fame in the United States and Canada. A filly, she was bred and owned by Jean-Louis Lévesque...

. Secretariat received the votes of the Thoroughbred Racing Associations of North America and the "Daily Racing Form
Daily Racing Form
The Daily Racing Form is a tabloid newspaper founded in 1894 in Chicago, Illinois by Frank Brunell. The paper publishes the past performances of race horses as a statistical service for bettors on horse racing in the United States....

", while La Prevoyante was chosen by the National Turf Writers Association
National Turf Writers Association
The National Turf Writers Association is an American association of journalists, columnists and other writers involved with reporting on the horse racing industry...

. Only one horse since then, Favorite Trick
Favorite Trick
Favorite Trick was an American Thoroughbred racehorse who in 1997 became the first 2-year-old in twenty-five years to be voted United States Horse of the Year....

 in 1997, has won that award as a two-year-old.

Preparing for the Kentucky Derby


Secretariat started off his three-year-old year with an easy win in the Bay Shore Stakes
Bay Shore Stakes
The Bay Shore Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race run annually in early April at Aqueduct Racetrack in Ozone Park, Queens, New York. The Grade III event is for three-year-olds of either gender, and is set at a distance of seven furlongs on the dirt track.In its 49th running in 2009, the...

 at Aqueduct. In his next start, the Gotham Stakes
Gotham Stakes
The Gotham Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-old horses run in early March at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York. A Grade III event with a purse of $250,000, it is set at a distance of one and one-sixteenth miles on the dirt...

, Secretariat led wire-to-wire for the first time in his career. He ran the first 3/4 of a mile in 1:08 and finished the one mile race in 1:33, equalling the track record. However, in his next start, he finished third in the Wood Memorial to his stablemate Angle Light and Santa Anita Derby
Santa Anita Derby
The Santa Anita Derby is an American Grade 1 thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds run each April at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California and carries a purse of $1 million. Inaugurated in 1935, it is considered the most important West Coast stepping-stone to the Kentucky Derby...

 winner Sham
Sham (horse)
Sham , an American thoroughbred race horse, was one of the fastest horses of the 20th century, but was overshadowed by his larger-than-life peer and half-cousin, Secretariat. He was a dark seal brown in color. While racing, he wore green and yellow blinkers...

, in their final preparatory race for the Kentucky Derby. Because of the Wood Memorial results, some were considering Sham the top pick for the Kentucky Derby. Sham was at the top of the list in the Louisville Courier-Journal and Times Derby Ratings on April 22, 1973.

The Kentucky Derby


Churchill Downs
Churchill Downs
Churchill Downs, located in Central Avenue in south Louisville, Kentucky, United States, is a Thoroughbred racetrack most famous for hosting the Kentucky Derby annually. It officially opened in 1875, and held the first Kentucky Derby and the first Kentucky Oaks in the same year. Churchill Downs...

 bettors made the entry of Secretariat and Angle Light the 3–2 favorite in the 1973 Kentucky Derby
Kentucky Derby
The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, United States on the first Saturday in May, capping the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. The race is one and a quarter mile at Churchill Downs. Colts and geldings carry...

. (Sham was next at 5—2.) Secretariat broke last, but gradually moved up on the field in the backstretch, then overtook Sham
Sham (horse)
Sham , an American thoroughbred race horse, was one of the fastest horses of the 20th century, but was overshadowed by his larger-than-life peer and half-cousin, Secretariat. He was a dark seal brown in color. While racing, he wore green and yellow blinkers...

 at the top of the stretch, pulling away to win the Derby by 2 lengths. Our Native finished third.

On his way to a still-standing track record (1:59), Secretariat ran each quarter-mile segment faster than the one before it. The successive quarter-mile times were 25, 24, 23, 23, and 23. This means he was still accelerating as of the final quarter-mile of the race. No other horse won the Derby in less than 2 minutes until Monarchos
Monarchos
Monarchos is a stallion Thoroughbred racehorse who won the Kentucky Derby in 2001. This thoroughbred's time was 1:59.97 for 1¼ miles. This is the second-fastest winning time in the race's history, behind 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat, who ran 1:59...

 in 2001.

The Preakness Stakes


In the Preakness Stakes
Preakness Stakes
The Preakness Stakes is an American flat Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds held on the third Saturday in May each year at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a Grade I race run over a distance of 9.5 furlongs on dirt. Colts and geldings carry 126 pounds ; fillies 121 lb...

, Secretariat broke last, but then made a huge, last-to-first move on the first turn. After reaching the lead with 5 furlongs to go, he was never challenged, and won by 2½ lengths, again with Sham finishing second and Our Native third.

The time of the race was controversial. The infield teletimer displayed a time of 1:55. The track's electronic timer had malfunctioned because of damage caused by members of the crowd crossing the track to reach the infield. The Pimlico Race Course
Pimlico Race Course
Pimlico Race Course is a horse racetrack in Baltimore, Maryland, most famous for hosting the Preakness Stakes. Its name is derived from the 1660s when English settlers named the area where the facility currently stands in honor of Olde Ben Pimlico's Tavern in London...

 clocker, E.T. McLean Jr., announced a hand time of 1:54. However, two "Daily Racing Form
Daily Racing Form
The Daily Racing Form is a tabloid newspaper founded in 1894 in Chicago, Illinois by Frank Brunell. The paper publishes the past performances of race horses as a statistical service for bettors on horse racing in the United States....

" clockers claimed the time was 1:53, which would have broken the track record (1:54 by Cañonero II
Canonero II
Canonero II , was a Venezuelan champion thoroughbred race horse.Bred by Edward B. Benjamin in Greensboro, North Carolina, the bay colt was born with a noticeably crooked foreleg, and as such was considered to have no future in racing. He was sold as a yearling for a mere $1,200 at the Keeneland...

). Tapes of Secretariat and Cañonero II were played side by side by CBS, and Secretariat got to the finish line first on tape, though this is not a reliable method of timing a horse race. The Maryland Jockey Club, which managed the Pimlico racetrack and is responsible for maintaining Preakness records, discarded both the electronic and Daily Racing Form times and recognized 1:54 as the official time. However, the "Daily Racing Form", for the first time in history, printed its own clocking of 1:53 next to the official time in the chart of the race.

Subsequently, Tank's Prospect (1985), Louis Quatorze (1996), and Curlin (2007) have run 1:53, equaling the time attributed to Secretariat by the Daily Racing Form. Farma Way
Farma Way
Farma Way was an American thoroughbred Stallion racehorse foaled in Kentucky. He was sired by Santa Anita Derby winner Marfa out of the Diplomat Way mare, Fine Tribute, a descendant of the very important sire, Nearco....

 won the 1991 Pimlico Special
Pimlico Special
The Pimlico Special is an American thoroughbred horse race held at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland in mid May. It is raced on dirt over a distance of 1³/16 miles . The race is currently open to horses age three and older and offers a purse of $250,000.The Pimlico Special was first run in...

 in 1:52, setting the current track record.

As Secretariat prepared for the Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

, he appeared on the covers of three national magazines: Time
Time (magazine)
Time is an American news magazine. A European edition is published from London. Time Europe covers the Middle East, Africa and, since 2003, Latin America. An Asian edition is based in Hong Kong...

, Newsweek
Newsweek
Newsweek is an American weekly news magazine published in New York City. It is distributed throughout the United States and internationally. It is the second-largest news weekly magazine in the U.S., having trailed Time in circulation and advertising revenue for most of its existence...

, and Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated is an American sports media company owned by media conglomerate Time Warner. Its self titled magazine has over 3.5 million subscribers and is read by 23 million adults each week, including over 18 million men. It was the first magazine with circulation over one million to win the...

. He had become a national celebrity.

The Belmont Stakes


Only four horses competed against Secretariat for the June 9, 1973, running of the Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

, including Sham, which had finished second in both the Derby and Preakness, along with three other horses thought to have little chance by the bettors: Twice A Prince, My Gallant, and Private Smiles. With so few horses in the race, and with Secretariat expected to win, no "show" bets were taken. Secretariat was sent off as a 1–10 favorite to win as a $2.20 payout on a $2 ticket and paid at 20 cents more – $2.40 – to place. Before a crowd of 67,605, Secretariat and Sham set a fast early pace, opening ten lengths on the rest of the field. After the six-furlong mark, Sham began to tire, ultimately finishing last. Secretariat astonished spectators by continuing the fast pace and opening up a larger and larger margin on the field. Viewers heard the wonder in CBS Television announcer Chic Anderson
Chic Anderson
Charles David Anderson was an American sportscaster and public address announcer specializing in Thoroughbred horse racing...

's voice as he described the horse's pace: "Secretariat is widening now! He is moving like a tremendous machine!"

In the stretch, Secretariat opened a 1/16 mile lead on the rest of the field. At the finish, he won by 31 lengths (breaking the margin-of-victory record set by Triple Crown winner Count Fleet
Count Fleet
Count Fleet was born and died at Stoner Creek Stud farm in Paris, Kentucky, United States. He was a Thoroughbred racehorse and Triple Crown champion in 1943....

 in 1943, which won by 25 lengths), and ran the fastest 1½ miles on dirt in history, 2:24 flat, which broke the stakes' record by more than two seconds. This works out to a speed of 37.5 mph for his entire performance. Secretariat's world record still stands, and in fact, no other horse has ever broken 2:25 for 1½ miles on dirt. If the Beyer Speed Figure
Beyer Speed Figure
The Beyer Speed Figure is a system for rating the performance of Thoroughbred racehorses in North America designed in the early 1970s by Andrew Beyer, the syndicated horse racing columnist for The Washington Post...

 calculation had been developed during that time, Andrew Beyer
Andrew Beyer
Andrew Beyer is an American expert on horse race betting who designed what has become known as the Beyer Speed Figure.In the early 1970s, while working for the Washington Daily News, Beyer did extensive work on the concept of speed figures and wrote books that helped popularize their use...

 calculated that Secretariat would have earned a figure of 139, the highest he has ever assigned. Many bettors holding 5,617 winning parimutuel tickets on Secretariat never redeemed them, presumably keeping them as souvenirs (and because they paid only $2.20 on a $2 bet).

Secretariat became the ninth Triple Crown winner in history, and the first in 25 years.

After the Triple Crown


Secretariat continued to prove himself as one of the top Thoroughbreds of all time. He shipped to Chicago just three weeks after the Belmont Stakes, and easily won the Arlington Invitational at Arlington Park
Arlington Park
Arlington Park is a horse race track in the Chicago suburb of Arlington Heights, Illinois. Horse racing in the Chicago region has been a popular sport since the early days of the city in the 1830s, and at one time Chicago had more horse racing tracks than any other major metropolitan area...

. He went to Saratoga, long known as the "graveyard of champions", and succumbed to the jinx, losing the Whitney Stakes to the Allen "the giant killer" Jerkens-trained Onion by a length. He then won the inaugural Marlboro Cup against a field that included Secretariat's stablemate, the 1972 Derby and Belmont Stakes winner Riva Ridge
Riva Ridge
Riva Ridge was a thoroughbred racehorse, the winner of the 1972 Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes. A son of First Landing out of Iberia , he was owned and bred by the Meadow Stable of Christopher Chenery. The horse's name came from Chenery's son-in-law, John Tweedy, who was a soldier in World War...

, top California stakes winner Cougar II
Cougar II
Cougar II was a Chilean Thoroughbred racehorse who also competed in theUnited States where he was inducted in the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. He was sired by Tale of Two Cities, a son of Tehran, winner of the 1944 St...

, Canadian champion Kennedy Road
Kennedy Road (horse)
Kennedy Road was a Canadian Thoroughbred Champion racehorse who dominated Canadian racing for three years before going to success in California.-Background:He was bred by Canadian mining magnate Arthur W...

, Onion, Travers winner Annihilate 'Em
Annihilate 'Em
Annihilate 'Em was a U.S. thoroughbred race horse who was best known for winning the 1973 Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York. Annihilate 'Em was ridden to victory in the Travers by Ron Turcotte, who originally planned to ride Triple Crown winner Secretariat in...

, and the 1972 American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse Key to the Mint
Key to the Mint
Key to the Mint was an American Thoroughbred racehorse.-Background:Bred by Paul Mellon and raced under his Rokeby Stable colors, Key to the Mint was trained by future Hall of Fame inductee, Elliott Burch.-Racing Career:...

. Secretariat ran 1:45 for 1 miles, then a world record for the distance.

Secretariat suffered another loss to an Allen Jerkens trainee, Prove Out
Prove Out
Prove Out was an American thoroughbred racehorse who, under the training of H. Allen Jerkens, scored a 16:1 upset victory over Secretariat in the 1973 Woodward Stakes, while conceding 7 pounds to the Triple Crown winner...

, by 4 lengths in the 1 mile Woodward Stakes
Woodward Stakes
The Woodward Stakes is an American Grade I stakes race and is one of the premier races for older thoroughbred horses in the United States. Named for prominent racehorse owner, George Nicholas Woodward, it is run at 1⅛ miles on the dirt for a purse of $750,000.The Woodward was run as a handicap in...

 in his next start. Secretariat was then moved to the turf to defeat his opposition in both the Man O' War Stakes (1 miles) by five lengths Tentam, setting a still-standing track record time of 2:24.

Secretariat's owner entered into a syndication deal that precluded the horse racing past age three. Accordingly, Secretariat's last race was against older horses in the Canadian International Stakes
Canadian International Stakes
The Canadian International Stakes is a $2 million Grade I Canadian stakes race on Turf for thoroughbred racehorses three years of age and up held annually in October at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario....

 at Woodbine Racetrack
Woodbine Racetrack
Woodbine Racetrack is a Canadian racetrack for Thoroughbred horse races located at 555 Rexdale Blvd. in the city of Toronto, Ontario. It is the only horseracing track in North America which stages, or is capable of staging, thoroughbred and standardbred horseracing programs on the same day...

 in Toronto
Toronto
Toronto is the provincial capital of Ontario and the largest city in Canada. It is located in Southern Ontario on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario. A relatively modern city, Toronto's history dates back to the late-18th century, when its land was first purchased by the British monarchy from...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 on October 28, 1973. It was the second time in his career that he raced on grass and the first time he was asked to go one and five-eighths miles (just a furlong farther than he had already run twice that year). Secretariat won with another impressive performance. With Ron Turcotte out with a five-day suspension, Eddie Maple
Eddie Maple
Edward Retz "Eddie" Maple is a retired American thoroughbred horse racing jockey. One of eight brothers and sisters, he was an older brother to jockey Sam Maple who won more than 2,500 races. He began riding horses at age 12 and won his first race as a professional at 17...

 rode Secretariat to victory by 6 lengths. After the race, Secretariat was brought to Aqueduct Racetrack where he was paraded before fans in his final public appearance.

Altogether, Secretariat won 16 of his 21 career races, with three seconds and one third, for in-the-money finishes in 20 of 21 starts, and total earnings of $1,316,808.

At age three, Secretariat was again named Horse of the Year, as well as winning Eclipse Awards as the American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse and the American Champion Male Turf Horse.

Honors and retirement



As part of his first crop at stud, Secretariat sired Canadian Bound
Canadian Bound
Canadian Bound was the first Thoroughbred yearling racehorse ever to be sold for more than US$1 million. Bred by Texas oilman, Nelson Bunker Hunt, his dam was Charming Alibi who was also the dam of Hunt's great Hall of Fame filly, Dahlia. He was part of the first crop from the legendary U.S...

, who was the first Thoroughbred
Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...

 yearling
Yearling (horse)
A yearling is a young horse of either sex that is between one and two years old. Yearlings are comparable in development to a very early adolescent, they are not fully mature physically, and while they may be in the earliest stages of sexual maturity, they are considered too young to be breeding...

 racehorse
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 ever sold for more than US$
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

1 million. At the 1976 Keeneland July sale
Keeneland Sales
The Keeneland Sales is an American Thoroughbred auction house in Lexington, Kentucky founded in 1935 as a nonprofit racing/auction entity on 147 acres of farmland west of Lexington, which had been owned by Jack O. Keene...

, the auction bidding for Canadian Bound not only broke the $1 million barrier, but also the colt ended up being sold for $1.5 million. Canadian Bound was a complete failure in racing, so for several years, the value of Secretariat's offspring declined considerably. However, he eventually sired a number of major stakes winners, including 1986 Horse of the Year Lady's Secret
Lady's Secret
Lady's Secret was an American Eclipse Award winning Thoroughbred racemare that was listed in the Top 100 U.S. Racehorses of the 20th Century.-Breeding and background:...

, 1988 Preakness
Preakness Stakes
The Preakness Stakes is an American flat Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds held on the third Saturday in May each year at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a Grade I race run over a distance of 9.5 furlongs on dirt. Colts and geldings carry 126 pounds ; fillies 121 lb...

 and Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

 winner Risen Star
Risen Star
Risen Star, , was a champion thoroughbred race horse.The dark bay colt was the son of the great Triple Crown winner Secretariat out of the mare Ribbon. Bred by Arthur B. Hancock III and Leone J. Peters, Risen Star was bought by Louisianans Ronnie Lamarque and Louie Roussel III at the 1987 Calder...

, 1990 Melbourne Cup
Melbourne Cup
The Melbourne Cup is Australia's major Thoroughbred horse race. Marketed as "the race that stops a nation", it is a 3,200 metre race for three-year-olds and over. It is the richest "two-mile" handicap in the world, and one of the richest turf races...

 winner Kingston Rule
Kingston Rule
Kingston Rule is an American-bred racehorse who raced in Australia where he won the 1990 Melbourne Cup in a record time of 3:16:3. This time still stands as the record today....

, which broke the course record in Australia's
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 richest race, and the 1994, 1995 winner of the G1 Pacific Classic
Pacific Classic Stakes
The Pacific Classic Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race for runners aged 3-year-old or up run at the classic American distance of a mile and a quarter...

, Tinners Way
Tinners Way (horse)
Tinners Way is an American Thoroughbred sired by 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat and out of Devon Diva, whose sire was The Minstrel. Born in 1990 to Secretariat's final crop, he was his sire's last graded-stakes-winning colt. His career spanned multiple countries, tracks and surfaces...

, born in 1990 to Secretariat's last crop.

He also sired General Assembly
General Assembly (horse)
General Assembly was an American Thoroughbred racehorse. He was bred and raced by the prominent husband-and-wife team of Bertram and Diana Firestone, of Upperville, Virginia. General Assembly was out of the mare Exclusive Dancer, daughter of Hall of Fame inductee and American Horse of the Year...

, which won the 1979 Travers Stakes
Travers Stakes
The Travers Stakes is an American Grade I Thoroughbred horse race held at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York.First held in 1864, it was named for William R. Travers, the president of the old Saratoga Racing Association. His horse, Kentucky, won the first running of the Travers...

 at Saratoga while setting a still-standing race record of 2:00 flat. Andrew Beyer has said General Assembly's speed figure in that race was one of the fastest in history. Like Secretariat in the Belmont, General Assembly never duplicated that performance in the races that remained on his schedule. Secretariat was retired at three years old and General Assembly at four.

Ultimately, Secretariat sired as many as 600 foals. There has been some criticism of Secretariat as a stallion, due in part to his perceived inability to produce male offspring of his same caliber. However, he turned out to be a noted broodmare sire, being the maternal grandsire ("damsire") of 1992 Horse of the Year and successful sire A.P. Indy
A.P. Indy
A.P. Indy is a champion stallion Thoroughbred racehorse bred in Kentucky, USA, by William Farish III and William Kilroy. He is known for his ancestry, his own record, and his successful progeny. He was sired by Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew through mare Weekend Surprise, who herself was sired...

, Secretariat's grandson through his daughter Weekend Surprise
Weekend Surprise
Weekend Surprise was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and dam of 1992 American Horse of the Year A.P. Indy and 1990 Preakness Stakes winner Summer Squall. She was sired by the famous Triple Crown winner Secretariat....

, and sired by another Triple Crown winner, Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew
Seattle Slew was an American Thoroughbred race horse who won the United States Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing in 1977, the tenth of eleven horses to accomplish the feat. He remains the only horse to win the Triple Crown while undefeated. In the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 U.S...

. AP Indy is the sire of 2007 Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

 winner Rags to Riches
Rags to Riches (horse)
Rags to Riches is an American thoroughbred filly racehorse who in 2007 became the first filly to win the Belmont Stakes in over a century. She was sired by 1992 U.S. Horse of the Year and U.S. Racing Hall of Fame inductee A.P. Indy, who in turn was a son of 1977 U.S...

, the first filly to win at Belmont since 1905. Secretariat is also the damsire of the great stallions Storm Cat
Storm Cat
Storm Cat was an American Thoroughbred stallion whose breeding fee during the peak of his stud career was $500,000, the highest in the world. As such, he was one of the few horses with a 24-hour armed guard....

 (by Storm Bird
Storm Bird
Storm Bird was a Canadian-bred Thoroughbred racehorse in Ireland. He was a son of 1964 U.S. Champion 3-Yr-Old Colt Northern Dancer, "one of the most influential sires in Thoroughbred history." At age 2,trained by Vincent O'Brien, he won all five starts and was voted Champion in England and Ireland...

), through his daughter Terlingua, herself an excellent racemare, and of Gone West
Gone West (horse)
Gone West is an American Thoroughbred racehorse. Bred by Dr. William O. Reed, Gone West was a son of the very influential sire, Mr. Prospector, his dam, Secrettame, was a daughter of the legendary 1973 U.S...

, through his daughter Secrettame
Secrettame
She was originally purchased as a yearling at the Keeneland Yearling Sales by Venezuela´n owner Jose "Pepe" Sahagun and his Villa Blanca Farms.It was Sahagun's vision, even as a yearling, that she would one day be bred to Mr. Prospector...

. Secretariat is also the great-grandsire of Giant's Causeway
Giant's Causeway (horse)
Giant's Causeway is a Kentucky-bred thoroughbred racehorse who competed primarily in Europe. In 2000, he won five straight Group One races. His performance that year earned him European Horse of the Year honors....

 through his grandson Storm Cat
Storm Cat
Storm Cat was an American Thoroughbred stallion whose breeding fee during the peak of his stud career was $500,000, the highest in the world. As such, he was one of the few horses with a 24-hour armed guard....

 and daughter Terlingua. Secretariat's genetic legacy may be linked in part to the likelihood that he carried the "x-factor", a trait linked to a large heart, carried only on the X chromosome
X chromosome
The X chromosome is one of the two sex-determining chromosomes in many animal species, including mammals and is common in both males and females. It is a part of the XY sex-determination system and X0 sex-determination system...

, and thus, a trait Secretariat could only pass on via his daughters.

Death


In the fall of 1989, Secretariat was afflicted with laminitis
Laminitis
Laminitis is a disease that affects the feet of ungulates. It is best known in horses and cattle. Symptoms include lameness, and increased temperature in the hooves...

, a painful and often incurable hoof condition. When his condition failed to improve after a month of treatment, he was euthanized on October 4 at the age of 19. Popular both as a Triple Crown champion and in retirement, Secretariat was mourned by millions and buried at Claiborne Farm
Claiborne Farm
Claiborne Farm is a thoroughbred Horse breeding operation in near Paris, Kentucky. It was established in 1910, by Arthur B. Hancock, owner of Ellerslie Farm in Albemarle County, Virginia, and has been operated by members of his family ever since.-Owners:...

 in Paris, Kentucky
Paris, Kentucky
As of the census of 2000, there were 9,183 people, 3,857 households, and 2,487 families residing in the city. The population density was . There were 4,222 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the city was 84.23% White, 12.71% African American, 0.16% Native American, 0.16%...

, given the rare honor of being buried whole; usually only the head, heart, and hooves of a winning race horse are buried, and the rest of the body is cremated.

A necropsy revealed his heart
Circulatory system of the horse
The circulatory system of the horse consists of the heart, the blood vessels, and the blood.-The heart:The equine heart is made of muscle tissue, more rounded in shape than a human's, built with the sole purpose of pumping blood throughout the body...

 was significantly larger than that of an ordinary horse. An extremely large heart is a trait that occasionally occurs in Thoroughbreds, linked to a genetic condition passed down via the dam
Mare
Female horses are called mares.Mare is the Latin word for "sea".The word may also refer to:-People:* Ahmed Marzooq, also known as Mare, a footballer and Secretary General of Maldives Olympic Committee* Mare Winningham, American actress and singer...

 line, known as the "x-factor". The x-factor can be traced to the historic racehorse Eclipse
Eclipse (horse)
Eclipse was an outstanding, undefeated 18th-century British Thoroughbred racehorse who was later a phenomenal success as a sire.-Breeding:...

, which was necropsied after his death in 1789. Because Eclipse's heart appeared to be much larger than other horses, it was weighed, and found to be 14 pounds (6.4 kg), almost twice the normal weight. Eclipse is believed to have passed the trait on via his daughters, and pedigree research verified that Secretariat traces in his dam line to a daughter of Eclipse. In the 20th century, the heart of Phar Lap
Phar Lap
Phar Lap was a champion Thoroughbred racehorse whose achievements captured the public's imagination during the early years of the Great Depression. Foaled in New Zealand, he was trained and raced in Australia. Phar Lap dominated Australian racing during a distinguished career, winning a Melbourne...

 was weighed and also documented to be 6.35 kilograms (14 lb), or essentially the same size as that of Eclipse.

At the time of Secretariat's death, the veterinarian who performed the necropsy, Dr. Thomas Swerczek, head pathologist at the University of Kentucky, did not weigh Secretariat's heart, but stated, "We just stood there in stunned silence. We couldn’t believe it. The heart was perfect. There were no problems with it. It was just this huge engine." Later, Swerczek also performed a necropsy on Sham, which died in 1993. Swerczek did weigh Sham's heart, and it was 18 pounds (8.2 kg). Based on Sham's measurement, and having necropsied both horses, he estimated Secretariat's heart probably weighed 22 pounds (10 kg), or about two-and-three-quarters times as large as that of the average horse.

Posthumous recognition


On October 16, 1999, in the winner's circle at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington
Lexington, Kentucky
Lexington is the second-largest city in Kentucky and the 63rd largest in the US. Known as the "Thoroughbred City" and the "Horse Capital of the World", it is located in the heart of Kentucky's Bluegrass region...

, the U.S. Postal Service
United States Postal Service
The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

 honored Secretariat, unveiling a 33-cent postage stamp with his image. ESPN
ESPN
Entertainment and Sports Programming Network, commonly known as ESPN, is an American global cable television network focusing on sports-related programming including live and pre-taped event telecasts, sports talk shows, and other original programming....

 listed him 35th of the 100 greatest North American athletes of the 20th century, the highest of three non-humans on the list (the other two were also racehorses: Man o' War
Man O' War (horse)
Man o' War, is considered one of the greatest Thoroughbred racehorses of all time. During his career just after World War I, he won 20 of 21 races and $249,465 in purses....

 at 84th and Citation
Citation (horse)
Citation was the eighth American Triple Crown winner, and one of three major North American Thoroughbreds to win at least 16 consecutive races in major stakes race competition...

 at 97th ). Secretariat was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame
National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame
The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame was founded in 1950 in Saratoga Springs, New York, to honor the achievements of American thoroughbred race horses, jockeys, and trainers...

 in 1974, the year following his Triple Crown. In 2005, he appeared in ESPN Classic
ESPN Classic
ESPN Classic is a sports channel that features reruns of famous sporting events, sports documentaries, and sports themed movies. Such programs includes biographies of famous sports figures or a rerun of a famous World Series or Super Bowl, often with added commentary on the event...

's show "Who's No. 1?
Who's No. 1?
Who’s No. 1? is a sports series that debuted on ESPN25 in 2004 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of ESPN. Hosted by Stuart Scott, the show counted down a “Top 25 over the last 25 Years” list, counting down to #1, in such categories as Best Teams, Worst Teams, Biggest Flops, Greatest Records, Most...

". In the list of "Greatest Sports Performances" (by individual athletes), the horse was the only nonhuman on the list, with his run at Belmont ranking second behind Wilt Chamberlain
Wilt Chamberlain
Wilton Norman "Wilt" Chamberlain was an American professional NBA basketball player for the Philadelphia/San Francisco Warriors, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Los Angeles Lakers; he also played for the Harlem Globetrotters prior to playing in the NBA...

's 100-point game. On May 2, 2007, Secretariat was inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame, marking the first time an animal received this honor. Secretariat
Secretariat (film)
Secretariat is a 2010 biographical film produced by Walt Disney Pictures and Mayhem Pictures, and directed by Randall Wallace. The film chronicles the life of thoroughbred race horse Secretariat, winner of the Triple Crown in 1973...

, a Disney
Walt Disney Pictures
Walt Disney Pictures is an American film studio owned by The Walt Disney Company. Walt Disney Pictures and Television, a subsidiary of the Walt Disney Studios and the main production company for live-action feature films within the Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group, based at the Walt Disney...

 live-action film written by Mike Rich
Mike Rich
Mike Rich is an American screenwriter best known for his writing on sports-related films.-Early life:A graduate of Oregon State University's College of Business, Rich began his media career as a news reporter for a Portland radio station, KINK...

 and directed by Randall Wallace
Randall Wallace
Randall Wallace is an American screenwriter, director, producer, and songwriter who came to prominence by writing the screenplay for the 1995 film Braveheart. His work on the film earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay and a Writers Guild of America award for Best...

, was released on October 8, 2010.
A new award created in 2011 titled "Secretariat Vox Populi" (voice of the people) was presented by Penny Chenery to the first honoree, the 2010 Horse of the Year, Zenyatta
Zenyatta
Zenyatta is a retired American champion Thoroughbred racehorse, winner of 19 consecutive races in a 20-race career and American record-holder for consecutive victories without defeat in unrestricted races....

. This annual award will acknowledge the horse that brings the most excitement and attraction to the sport..

Race record at age two

  • Wins:
    • Sanford Stakes
      Sanford Stakes
      The Sanford Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually during the third week of July at the Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York. A six furlong sprint race, the Grade II event is open to two-year-old horses....

    • Hopeful Stakes
      Hopeful Stakes (USA)
      The Hopeful Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race run annually at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York. Open to two-year-old horses, the Hopeful is the first Grade I stakes for two-year-olds each season and historically has been a showcase for some of the top East Coast horses...

    • Belmont Futurity
    • Laurel Futurity
      Laurel Futurity
      The Laurel Futurity is an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually in late November at Laurel Park Racecourse in Laurel, Maryland. Run over a distance of 1 1/16 miles on turf, at one time it was a Grade I stakes race on dirt, and one of the richest and most important races for two-year-old...

    • Garden State Futurity
      Garden State Futurity
      The Garden State Stakes was an American Thoroughbred horse race held annually in mid November at the now defunct Garden State Park Racetrack in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. A futurity event for two-year-olds, it is sometimes referred to as the Garden State Futurity...


  • Second
    • Champagne Stakes
      Champagne Stakes (USA)
      The Champagne Stakes is an American Grade I Thoroughbred horse race for two-year-old horses. The race is run at a distance of one mile on the dirt at Belmont Park in October each year. It is nested exclusively by colts....

       (disqualified for interference)

Race record at age three


Wins
  • Kentucky Derby
    Kentucky Derby
    The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, United States on the first Saturday in May, capping the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. The race is one and a quarter mile at Churchill Downs. Colts and geldings carry...

     (stakes record of 1:59.2, still standing)
  • Preakness Stakes
    Preakness Stakes
    The Preakness Stakes is an American flat Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds held on the third Saturday in May each year at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a Grade I race run over a distance of 9.5 furlongs on dirt. Colts and geldings carry 126 pounds ; fillies 121 lb...

     (Daily Racing Form clockers claimed he established a new track record, but a malfunctioning official timer did not, and the clockers' time has not been officially recognized)
  • Belmont Stakes
    Belmont Stakes
    The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I stakes Thoroughbred horse race held every June at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is a 1.5-mile horse race, open to three year old Thoroughbreds. Colts and geldings carry a weight of 126 pounds ; fillies carry 121 pounds...

     (track record of 2:24, still stands fastest time over 1.5 miles in history on a dirt track)
  • Bay Shore Stakes
    Bay Shore Stakes
    The Bay Shore Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race run annually in early April at Aqueduct Racetrack in Ozone Park, Queens, New York. The Grade III event is for three-year-olds of either gender, and is set at a distance of seven furlongs on the dirt track.In its 49th running in 2009, the...

  • Gotham Stakes
    Gotham Stakes
    The Gotham Stakes is an American Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-old horses run in early March at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York. A Grade III event with a purse of $250,000, it is set at a distance of one and one-sixteenth miles on the dirt...

     (tied track record)
  • Arlington Invitational
    Secretariat Stakes
    The Secretariat Stakes is a Grade 1 flat horse race in the United States for three-year-old thoroughbreds. It is run over a distance of 1¼ miles . Held annually in mid August, it is the brother of both the Arlington Million and the Beverly D...

  • Marlboro Cup
    Marlboro Cup Invitational Handicap
    The Marlboro Cup Invitational Handicap was a Thoroughbred horse race first run in September 1973 at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. A Grade 1 race for horses 3 years old and up, it was raced over a distance of 1 1/8 miles on a dirt track....

     (new world record)
  • Man o' War Stakes
    Man O' War Stakes
    The Man o' War Stakes is a Thoroughbred horse race at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. Now Raced in July, it is a Grade I event offering a purse of $500,000 and is open to horses three-years-old and up. Run at one and three-eighths mile on the grass, the race sometimes attracts top European horses...

     (new course record)
  • Canadian International Stakes
    Canadian International Stakes
    The Canadian International Stakes is a $2 million Grade I Canadian stakes race on Turf for thoroughbred racehorses three years of age and up held annually in October at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, Ontario....



Second
  • Whitney Handicap
    Whitney Handicap
    The Whitney Handicap is an American Grade 1 handicap race for Thoroughbred racehorses three years of age and older run at a distance of 1⅛ miles. In 2007, the Breeders' Cup Ltd...

  • Woodward Stakes
    Woodward Stakes
    The Woodward Stakes is an American Grade I stakes race and is one of the premier races for older thoroughbred horses in the United States. Named for prominent racehorse owner, George Nicholas Woodward, it is run at 1⅛ miles on the dirt for a purse of $750,000.The Woodward was run as a handicap in...



Third
  • Wood Memorial Stakes
    Wood Memorial Stakes
    The Wood Memorial Stakes is an American flat Thoroughbred horse race for three-year-olds held annually at Aqueduct Racetrack in Jamaica, New York. It is currently a Grade I race run over a distance of 9 furlongs on dirt....


Pedigree



External links