June 9 - 1973 - Secretariat Wins the Triple Crown
Secretariat's victory in the Belmont placed him in the elite category of Triple Crown winning American thoroughbreds. Yet his Belmont win did more than make him a Triple Crown winner, as his win was so immense that he left his opponents 31 lengths behind him and produced a world record in the mile and a half which still stands. In many ways, Secretariat was built for just such a moment. His sire, Bold Ruler, was one of the best thoroughbred Stallions in the 1970s. Secretariat's conformation was nearly perfect, producing immense power in his stride. As a young horse, he seemed indifferent to racing. But once he hit the track, he proved to be a truly special horse. He developed a pattern in his two year old year, starting slowly and taking the lead from behind. He did this throughout his two year old season, and became a favorite for the Kentucky Derby as the 1973 season began. His loss in the Wood Memorial made people doubt him. Then he set a new track record with his win in the Kentucky Derby. He would subsequently win the Preakness Stakes. Finally, though, it was the Belmont Stakes, where Secretariat won so impressive, that made Secretariat one of the great horses in history.