A Triple Crown™, an honor of a lifetime, is what every horse racing team strives for. Jockey, Trainer, Owner and everyone in between sets out at the Kentucky Derby® for their first win, enters the Preakness Stakes with high hopes, and then aims to complete the trifecta at the Belmont Stakes. What many don’t realize is how rare it is for a horse to mark his name in history as a Triple Crown™ winner. (So difficult that only 12 horses have claimed victory from 1919 – 2015.)
Derby Experiences is here to breakdown each victory, pedigree and team of the 12 Triple Crown™ winners for you in a 12-part series occurring the last Tuesday of each month. Starting with Sir Barton in 1919 and ending in American Pharoah in 2015, saddle-up, because here we go. This week’s Triple Crown winner is Omaha who claimed his victory in 1935.
During Omaha’s career, he won nine out of 22 races which he participated in between the years 1934 and 1936. As the son of the 1930 Triple Crown™ winner, Gallant Fox, he brought continued greatness to his linage by winning the Triple Crown™ himself in 1935. During his fourth year he performed well in England, where he raced in the Ascot Gold Cup and came in an impressive second place.
The three-year-old thoroughbred started as second favorite for the 1935 Kentucky Derby®. Race day brought cold weather and heavy rain, but this did not stop the crowds of over 50,000 from coming to Churchill Downs®. Jockey Willie Saunders kept Omaha out of any early trouble before moving the colt into the lead during the backstretch. Omaha, who was never seriously challenged, won the race by a length and a half without his jockey ever having to use his whip.
A week later, Omaha headed to Preakness Stakes where he was the odds-on favorite for good reason. He won the race by a large six lengths from Firethorn, in front of a crowd of 40,000 fans at the Pimlico Race Course. An overly excited Omaha could not stand still during the post-race ceremonies forcing Jockey Saunders to collect the presentational rose wreath abruptly before having to leave the winners circle.
On June 8th, 1935 Omaha headed to the final leg of the Triple Crown™, the Belmont Stakes, where he started 7/10 favorite over Rosemont, his closest competition. Racing on a sloppy track, Omaha remained towards the rear of the race in the initial stages. He then performed “one of his famous stretch drives” and pushed to the front on the backstretch to win by a length and a half in front of Firethorn.
Making his father proud and continuing his legacy, Omaha was then dubbed the third Triple Crown™ winner.
Secure Your Spot for the First Leg of the Triple Crown™
Be there to witness as the 3-year-old thoroughbreds start their journey towards the Triple Crown™ at the 2018 Kentucky Derby®. As the Official Partner of Churchill Downs®, Derby Experiences provides an unmatched experience for every guest during the Kentucky Derby® weekend. With vast seating selections and hospitality venues, accommodation options located throughout Louisville and exclusive party access, start your upcoming to Kentucky this May with Derby Experiences