Secretariat - Belmont Stakes 1973
I wasn't alive in 1973 and have never really followed horse racing, but I just found a video of the 1973 Belmont Stakes and it's utterly remarkable. Watched it several times now and am still amazed each time. I love when they have to switch to a wider angle lens because Secretariat's lead has become so big.
Also watched the Preakness, where he's dead last for 25+ seconds and then passes the field to win.
|by Anonymous||reply 90||Last Sunday at 4:15 PM|
Reminds me of my Auntie Pat's FACE.
It could stop a clock.
|by Anonymous||reply 1||04/10/2021|
What an amazing creature. I absolutely remember this and Secretariat was a celebrity after that. A real cultural touchstone.
|by Anonymous||reply 2||04/10/2021|
Secretariat was fucking awesome. I remember him on the cover of Time magazine.
|by Anonymous||reply 6||04/10/2021|
I saw secretariat run at Hollywood park after he won the triple crown. I have never seen anything like it. He came up from behind and left all the other horses in the dust. He was an amazing horse.
|by Anonymous||reply 7||04/10/2021|
What an incredible horse! Gives me goosebumps everytime
|by Anonymous||reply 8||04/10/2021|
His secret? he was born with a larger than normal heart.
|by Anonymous||reply 9||04/10/2021|
Watching it live was very exciting. Phenomenal horse.
|by Anonymous||reply 10||04/10/2021|
I get tears in my eyes watching this.
|by Anonymous||reply 11||04/10/2021|
R7 You must be thinking about Affirmed. Secretariat never ran at Hollywood Park. He ran at Arlington Park in Chicago after the Triple Crown (they created a race just for him, and he won wire to wire) OP thank you for creating this thread! I was a huge 10 year old Secretariat fan in 1973. He was on the cover of Time, Newsweek and Sports Illustrated all in the same week. An amazing and beautiful horse. Sadly, he passed away too soon. But for those of us who were fans, he will never be forgotten. His stakes records set in Derby, Preakness and Belmont still have not been broken.
|by Anonymous||reply 13||04/10/2021|
You're welcome, r13!
[quote]His stakes records set in Derby, Preakness and Belmont still have not been broken.
I had no idea. That's truly incredible.
|by Anonymous||reply 14||04/10/2021|
Secretariat was buried whole and embalmed...and I think standing up. That's a high honor for a horse. "Big Red"....gorgeous horse.
|by Anonymous||reply 15||04/10/2021|
R13 here: I just watched the clip you posted. The music added was not necessary. Poor Sham never raced again. He was Secretariat’s arch rival and the Belmont broke his heart. You should view Secretariats final race. A grass race in Canada. Run in late October, near dark, and here comes the big red horse with steam pouring out of his nostrils as he destroys a stellar field of horses. I have such great memories of that horse! Heading off to You Tube to relive my youth.
|by Anonymous||reply 16||04/10/2021|
I had to watch it muted r16
|by Anonymous||reply 17||04/10/2021|
I remember thinking while watching the movie Secretariat that if it wasn't a true story, it would be the biggest eye roll inducing ending ever. "He not only wins the race, but does it by the biggest margin in history!" It's like when my nephew plays at basketball and makes believe his team won the game by 100 points.
I am driving through Kentucky this May (not during the Derby) and plan on going to Claiborne to see Secretariat's grave.
|by Anonymous||reply 20||04/10/2021|
I could be here all day, but for all you youngsters who want to know how lucky us old timers were, watch this!
|by Anonymous||reply 21||04/10/2021|
r18 the moment when Secretariat starts to pull away is incredible
|by Anonymous||reply 22||04/10/2021|
Holy fuck R17! Secretariat is next the the lead even behind for a while....then, at the last stretch he runs like a bat out of hell! The distance between him the the pack of horses is unbelievably incredible! He takes his stride, then *whooosh! He was one of a kind.
|by Anonymous||reply 23||04/10/2021|
R23 Secretariat is still last 25 seconds into the race:
|by Anonymous||reply 24||04/10/2021|
I watched the Belmont on TV with my Dad. Great memory. Great race.
R21 Thanks for the link to the ESPN Sports Century documentary.
I love, love the bit about Jack Nicklaus querying the sports announcer who was at this race. Nicklaus told him that he was home alone watching Secretariat race at the Belmont and "as he came down the stretch and pulled away, I applauded, and I cried."
|by Anonymous||reply 25||04/10/2021|
A lot of people who had winning tickets for that race, never cashed them in, preferring to keep the ticket instead.
|by Anonymous||reply 27||04/10/2021|
Probably the unclaimed ticket is worth more now, than if it was claimed at the time...lol. It was a very special moment...a very special horse.
|by Anonymous||reply 28||04/10/2021|
One of my early memories as a Virginian was Julius Erving playing for the Virginia Squires. The second thing was watching Secretariat winning the Triple Crown. He was sired 25 miles or so up I95 from Richmond. Something not talked about as much was his big brother Riva Ridge won the Kentucky Derby and Belmont the year before. RR was a descendant of Man o' War.
|by Anonymous||reply 29||04/10/2021|
He was just incredible. Best moment in sports!
|by Anonymous||reply 30||04/10/2021|
Those were the days, OP. I was 15 in 1973, and I loved to watch those races. Now, not so much.
|by Anonymous||reply 31||04/10/2021|
I wish I had an interest in the races back then...but I didn't. Until pretty recently, I became interested in watching the triple crown races. I look back on all the excitement of the old races on youtube. Not quite like being there....or experiencing the excitement of the moment, when it happens.
|by Anonymous||reply 32||04/10/2021|
I just rewatched the ESPN Sports Century documentary I posted earlier. It’s been years and so sad knowing more then half the people commenting have passed away. To hear those grizzled old racing guys gush over a horse warms my heart.
|by Anonymous||reply 33||04/10/2021|
Wow!! I watched it live as a kid.. but now it brings tears to my eyes watching such an amazing horse and champion! Thanks for posting. I’m watching the Belmont win as I type
|by Anonymous||reply 34||04/10/2021|
Am I reading this article right? Secretariat never had sons, only daughters?
|by Anonymous||reply 35||04/10/2021|
[quote]I get tears in my eyes watching this.
[quote]Me too [R11]!
This is the Belmont Stakes scene from the movie "Secretariat". I suggest you two Mary!s have some Kleenex handy for when "Oh, Happy Day" kicks in.
|by Anonymous||reply 36||04/10/2021|
R35: No, he sired sons and daughters! His son Risen Star won the Preakness and Belmont. His daughters just were better at producing racehorses.
|by Anonymous||reply 37||04/10/2021|
This is the actual Belmont broadcast from 1973 and includes post race comments. No maudlin music, just grown men in awe of an incredible horse.
|by Anonymous||reply 38||04/10/2021|
When they say his Belmont record of 2:24 might never be broken, well here we are almost 50 years later and no other horse has come close. There will never be another one like him. For those of us alive in 1973, we were in middle of Watergate. Vietnam war was tearing country apart. And this magnificent red horse took our minds off the bad shit for awhile. Again, thank you to the original poster. You made my day .
|by Anonymous||reply 41||04/10/2021|
[quote]R13 (Secretariat fan)
I hadn't noticed ;-)
|by Anonymous||reply 42||04/10/2021|
Datalounge never disappoints. Drag race bitching, gossip about long dead celebrities, political discourse and assorted dick pics. Throw in some horse racing, and I’m good.
|by Anonymous||reply 43||04/10/2021|
Love movies from when we were little!
|by Anonymous||reply 44||04/10/2021|
I prefer race photos more in line with the DL's usual focus.
|by Anonymous||reply 45||04/10/2021|
Thank heavens such pinnacles of racing-sport watchability are not as rare as one would think.
|by Anonymous||reply 46||04/10/2021|
Oh, it has to be a horse race here?
|by Anonymous||reply 47||04/10/2021|
I saw Secretariat lose at Saratoga to a horse named Onion.
|by Anonymous||reply 48||04/10/2021|
I don't know if anymore remembers a filly named Genuine Risk. In 1980 she won the Kentucky Derby. She was from a horse farm close to where I live in Virginia. (Firestone horse farm.) I met someone who worked at that horse farm. He told they used Secretariat as a stud for Genuine Risk - and all thought their foal would be remarkable. He said the foal was born stillborn and they were all heartbroken. He got choked up just telling me about it.
|by Anonymous||reply 49||04/10/2021|
Very sad R49 I can’t imagine how excited they all were about that foal with those amazing parents.
|by Anonymous||reply 50||04/10/2021|
R36 Thank you...and yes, I'm tearing up! If there was a way to go back in time, to witness greatness, or to attend great concerts/festivals... the three legs of the 1973 Triple Crown would be one of them. What a perfect song in that video, when Secretariat broke free of the pack and ran like the wind. I think, because of his larger heart, he had more stamina than other horses. What looked like he was running too hard in the beginning...was really his basic stride, then at the last stretch...he turned it on and was like a meticulous running machine. Other horses may be tiring and loose a little steam, he was only beginning. I googled out of curiousity, what the fastest he ran. It was 49 mph. An average racehorse can run from 37 to 44 mph.
|by Anonymous||reply 52||04/11/2021|
*lose a little steam... (oh dear)^^
|by Anonymous||reply 53||04/11/2021|
r53 I thought for a half second about "oh, dearing" you, but your post was far too endearing. :-)
|by Anonymous||reply 54||04/11/2021|
*curiosity...oh boy...sorry for the errors.
|by Anonymous||reply 56||04/11/2021|
All is forgiven!
I never thought this thread would generate this many replies
|by Anonymous||reply 57||04/11/2021|
geez...I even screwed up OP..(ON) haha I'll just read now.
|by Anonymous||reply 58||04/11/2021|
I keep watching the Belmont.
What is utterly incredible to me is the distance he opened up in about 45 seconds.
|by Anonymous||reply 59||04/11/2021|
Question for r13:
Do race horses basically sprint the whole race? If not, how to they know to pace themselves?
|by Anonymous||reply 60||04/11/2021|
I'm not R 13, but my guess would be that the jockey has some control of the horse...to not have them push too hard in the beginning..using the reins and body language. Someone else might have a better answer.
|by Anonymous||reply 61||04/11/2021|
Did his larger-than-normal heart contribute to his early death?
|by Anonymous||reply 62||04/11/2021|
Yes if you have ever ridden a horse the bit and reins allow you to steer and slow down a horse. Great jockeys know exactly how fast they are going so that they can time their mount’s speed to run their fastest time.
|by Anonymous||reply 63||04/11/2021|
He had laminitis, an inflamation of the foot...can be painful and crippling. It can be managed, but there's no cure. He was euthanized.
|by Anonymous||reply 64||04/11/2021|
It wasn’t secretariats top speed that was so impressive as quarter horses and sprinters could probably run faster for a burst. It was his ability to run at a very high cruising speed furlong after furlong that made him the greatest.
|by Anonymous||reply 65||04/11/2021|
No lie: I was a contestant on Password, which was filming on that Saturday. During a commercial break Allen Ludden announced that Secretariat had won the Belmont. It was a bit discouraging, however, to realize that a horse received more applause than I did for winning the game.
|by Anonymous||reply 66||04/11/2021|
I just looked at his Wiki page. The veterinarian who did the necropsy said everyone was astonished by the size of his heart, 2.5 times the size of an average horse's. And in perfect condition. Amazing.
|by Anonymous||reply 67||04/11/2021|
Watching his Belmont Run gives me chills! It is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. Plus, his backstory of no one thinking he had what it took initially.
|by Anonymous||reply 68||04/11/2021|
Secretariat’s sons failed to become quality sires, so his sireline is extinct. But he was a successful damsire, meaning he lives on in the pedigree of modern thoroughbreds through his daughters.
|by Anonymous||reply 69||04/11/2021|
Are any of his children trans?
|by Anonymous||reply 70||04/11/2021|
R70 Well a lot of them were geldings. Does that count?
|by Anonymous||reply 71||04/11/2021|
Apparently, according to the Wiki article, Secretariat's large heart was passed through the matrilineal line, so it's just as well that the dams are the successes.
|by Anonymous||reply 72||04/11/2021|
I have enjoyed reading all the comments here. Another interesting fact: Secretariat’s sure was Bold Ruler. He was a good race horse, but he was know for speed, not stamina. The Belmont is a mile & half race, not a commonly run distance. The majority of races in US are 6 furlongs (a mile is 8 furlongs) Before the Belmont, there was talk Secretariat couldn’t run a mile & half. Plenty of horses had won the Derby and Preakness, but the Belmont was just too far. And the three Triple Crown races are run over a short period. The Derby is first Saturday in May, the Preakness 2 weeks later, followed by Belmont 3 weeks later. It’s extraordinary what Secretariat accomplished in 1973. After he smashed the record in the Belmont for a mile & half, he was going so fast he galloped out and broke the track record for mile & 5/8ths as well. He certainly earned his legendary status.
|by Anonymous||reply 73||04/11/2021|
The horses with enlarged hearts thing has existed (in documented history) since the 1700s. Secretariat was one in a long line, but not the first.
|by Anonymous||reply 75||04/11/2021|
R48 Yes, Secretariat did lose the Whitney at Saratoga to a horse named Onion. But a few weeks later, in the Marlboro Cup, Secretariat got his revenge and sounded defeated Onion. In world record time for a mile and an eighth.
|by Anonymous||reply 76||04/11/2021|
My dad says he was at Belmont that day and saw the race.
|by Anonymous||reply 77||04/11/2021|
R76 that’s why Saratoga is the Graveyard of Champions.
|by Anonymous||reply 78||04/11/2021|
R75 - Did breeders actually pick up on behavioral nuances that might have indicated a superior horse? Or did they rely on after-the-fact necropsies to validate a larger heart and the following bullshiteries?
|by Anonymous||reply 79||04/11/2021|
[quote] Let’s take a look again at Secretariat’s lineage to get a real life example, since we know him to be a carrier from his 22-pound heart. Secretariat’s dam was a mare named Something Royal, and her sire, Princequillo, is considered one of modern racing’s primary carriers of the x factor gene, but only his daughters will make foals with the enlarged heart. Writer and founder of the theory, Marianna Haun, originally traced Princequillo’s X factor as far back as a mare born in 1837, named Pocahontas. After verifying Pocahontas with scientific researchers, veterinarians, and TB breeders, they were able to take the line even further back, first to famous stud Eclipse born in 1764, and then finally to the very earliest traceable ancestor who carried the large heart gene, Hautboy, one of the founding thoroughbred bloodlines in the mid-seventeenth century.
Though, the article also says there are horses with huge hearts that haven't become champions for a myriad of reasons (wrong training, wrong temperament, whatever).
|by Anonymous||reply 80||04/11/2021|
Right after the triple crown Secretariat was taken to several race tracks for the show. it wasn't really an official race but he was so popular that everyone wanted to see him run. I wasn't in CA when Affirmed ran.
|by Anonymous||reply 81||04/13/2021|
I watched all the videos linked here, including the documentary. Probably watched the Belmont three or four times. Just thrilling, absolutely thrilling. Thanks for posting these, OP.
|by Anonymous||reply 82||04/13/2021|
His jockey is pretty cool.
|by Anonymous||reply 83||04/13/2021|
Ron Turcotte (Secretariat’s jockey for majority of his races, including the Triple Crown) was injured in a race only a few years after riding Secretariat. He was paralyzed and confined to wheelchair. Sad ending to his riding career, but he is still alive and enjoying life. He is the only living member of the people closest to Secretariat.
|by Anonymous||reply 84||04/13/2021|
2021 Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit descends from Secretariat through three of his daughters: Terlingua, Weekend Surprise and Secrettame.
|by Anonymous||reply 85||05/04/2021|
Belmont Racetrack is absolutely beautiful. You step into the 19th Century. And it's in Queens!
|by Anonymous||reply 86||05/04/2021|
R86 I think it’s in Nassau. Aqueduct is in Queens.
|by Anonymous||reply 87||05/04/2021|
It's going to be really interesting how Medina Spirit does in the Triple Crown. He seemed to know he was in a race and wasn't going to let another horse pass him. Very few racehorses realize this. They just run cause they are being whipped. But Secretariat knew he was in a race and maybe Medica Spirit does too.
|by Anonymous||reply 88||05/04/2021|
Poor Medina Spirit. His win will probably be taken away. I can't stand Baffart- never could.
|by Anonymous||reply 90||Last Sunday at 4:15 PM|