Everybody knows about the Kentucky Derby, the first race out of the allured Triple Crown of thoroughbred racing, but what about the second race? May is an exciting time, especially for those fans of the sport of kings.
California Chrome was victorious in the most well recognized race and now the focus is on race two if the dream of the Triple Crown wants to be attained: the middle one that is often looked over. It may be somewhat in the shadow of the Kentucky Derby as far as the casual fan is concerned, but that certainly doesn’t mean it isn’t a thrilling race filled with history and appreciation. Here are a handful of facts about the Preakness Stakes.
The trophy of all trophies
It isn’t often that the winner of a particular sporting event isn’t allowed to hold their trophy after the event, but this certainly is the case with the Woodlawn Vase. It was created in 1860 by Tiffany and Co. and is worth a whopping one million dollars.
The actual authentic trophy is no longer given out to the winners, and they are instead given a replica that is worth a meager 30,000 dollars. The original now sits on display at the Baltimore Museum of Art.
For the winning horse of the Preakness Stakes goes a blanket that is draped around them; the blanket is called the Black-Eyed Susan and is modeled after the state flower of the same name. The problem is that the state flower of Maryland doesn’t bloom until June, thus the creators of the blanket need to paint the center of the more than 80 bunches of normal yellow daisies, black.
Five fillies have won the Preakness in the long history of the race
Like the Kentucky Derby, fillies haven’t fared very well throughout the 130 plus years of the Preakness Stakes. The five fillies that have been victorious are Flocarline (1903), Whimsical (1906), Rhine Maiden (1915), Nellie Morse (1924), and Rachel Alexandria (2009).
The first winner
The inaugural Preakness Stakes was raced in 1873 and was won by Survivor.
Like father, like son
The great champion of thoroughbred racing, Gallant Fox, won the Triple Crown of horse racing in 1930, but hadn’t had enough. As well as siring many Preakness winners, his offspring, Omaha, mimicked his father in winning the Triple Crown in 1935.
Nine total Preakness winners have passed on winning genes and sired Preakness winner.