The Greatest Triple Crown Victors in History
The Triple Crown champs have demonstrated incredible speed, stamina, and drive, making them admirable horse racing legends. Since 1919, there have been only 13 Triple Crown winners. Let’s delve into the incredible stories of some of these Triple Crown legends and explore their journeys to greatness.
Sir Barton (1919)
Sir Barton, a chestnut colt from 1919, was the very first horse to win the Triple Crown, which was bagged again until 1930. He won Kentucky Derby in 2:09 ⅘ and rolled to take both wins in the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, claiming fame and etching his name in horse racing history.
Gallant Fox (1930)
Gallant Fox, a bay horse from 1930, won the Kentucky Derby in 2:07 ⅗ seconds and the Preakness Stakes in 1:59 ⅖ seconds, making historic placement in both events. Afterward, he prevailed in Belmont Stakes, stunningly winning the Triple Crown. Gallant Fox’s incredible agility and stamina earn him to be one of the horse racing legends.
Omaha’s Triple Crown achievement in 1935 established him as an impressive horse racing icon. He has a spectacular record in the Kentucky Derby, completing in 2:05 ⅕. After that, Omaha galloped to win both the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, making him the third horse in time to complete and achieve the Triple Crown.
War Admiral (1937)
War Admiral’s Triple Crown triumph in 1937 sealed his position in horse racing history. War Admiral achieved an all-new Kentucky Derby record with a finishing time of 2:03 ⅕, which remained unbreakable for nearly ten years. He went on to win the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, capturing the Triple Crown in commanding fashion.
The famed chestnut racehorse Whirlaway won the Triple Crown in 1941 and is remembered as one of the best Triple Crown winners. The thoroughbred horse created a new record that stood for over 20 years with his incredible 2:01 ⅗ Kentucky Derby finishing time. Following victories in the Preakness and Belmont Stakes, Whirlaway became the fifth thoroughbred to capture the coveted Triple Crown.
Count Fleet (1943)
Count Fleet, a bay colt bred in 1940, is widely recognized as one of the best Triple Crown winners in the horse racing sport’s history. In 1943, Count Fleet took home all three Triple Crown races, breaking an old record and setting a new one for the Belmont Stakes with a time of 2:28 ⅕. His record stood for 25 years.
Assault, the winning chestnut colt of 1946, swept all three races with flying colors, creating a new Kentucky Derby record with a time of 2:06 ⅗. What makes Assault more remarkable is that he was the first horse to win the Triple Crown with a mere four weeks between races rest, a record that has yet to be beaten.
Citation’s greatness was set forth since becoming the last horse to triumph in the Triple Crown before a winning drought of 25 years. He accomplished his breakout race in 1948. Citation’s dominance was most evident in the Belmont Stakes, where he won by eight lengths. He set a new record of 2:28 ⅕ in the race and stood still until Secretariat Broke it in 1973.
The best Triple Crown winner in history is arguably Secretariat, ending the 25-year drought in 1973. In all three races, the chestnut colt dominated the competition and course history. Moreover, many spectators bet on horse racing every time Secretariat was on track. It manifests how horse racing enthusiasts trusted his racing abilities.
Secretariat set the records for triumphing in the Kentucky Derby in 1:59 ⅖, the Preakness Stakes in 1:53, and the Belmont Stakes in 2:24. Most horse-racing enthusiasts consider Secretariat’s triumph in Belmont Stakes to be one of the notable victories in the horse-racing era. He finished by 31 lengths, the grandest victory margin in Triple Crown history.
Seattle Slew (1977)
Seattle Slew won the Triple Crown in 1977, becoming the 10th horse to covet the achievement. He finished the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes, finishing the Belmont Stakes in a time of 2:29 ⅕. Seattle Slew’s record in the 1877 Triple Crown was undefeated, earning him the Horse of the Year title.
Affirmed’s triumph in the 1978 Triple Crown was a dramatic glory. He had to compete against Alydar, his rival in the three events, and the two horses engaged in thrilling battles in the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes. Affirmed triumphed in both matches by a close margin and then showed ability by dominating the Belmont Stakes and winning by one and a half lengths.
American Pharoah (2015)
When American Pharoah triumphed in the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes in 2015, he broke a 37-year Triple Crown drought. He earned the Triple Crown title after Affirmed in 1978 and the 12th ever. American Pharoah won the Belmont Stakes by five and a half lengths and finished at a pace of 2:26.65.
Justify’s Triple Crown victory in 2018 elevated him to the ranks of horse racing’s all-time greats. He dominated all three races, setting a new track best in the Kentucky Derby with a speed of 2:04 ⅕. Justify’s tremendous power, speed, and agility established him as a significant sporting legend and Triple Crown champion of his time.
Winning the Triple Crown is an immense achievement in horse racing, and the 13 horses that have accomplished this extraordinary feat are truly sporting icons. Each Triple Crown champion, from Sir Barton in 1919 to Justify in 2018, has left an indelible mark on the horse racing community.