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Thread: ***GDG--40 Years Ago Today--PERFECTION!!--GDG**

  1. #11
    Senior Member Richard Finch's Avatar
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    "Perfection"... Very well said my friend....



    Richard
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  2. #12
    Senior Member HuntinDawg's Avatar
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    I was only 6 years old when that race was run and I did not see it, but the first time I did see that video I was in awe. I just showed it to my daughter yesterday. We have a grandson of Secretariat (retired race horse) on my dad's farm and I had told her (she's 9) that he is a grandson of Secretariat, but she didn't know who that was. She does now. After I showed her the Belmont footage she wanted to see the Derby and Preakness as well, which we also watched on YouTube. I would like to see another Triple Crown winner, but there will never be another Secretariat IMO. Did you know he set the record in all 3 races of the Triple Crown and still holds all 3? Also still holds the track record at Churchill Downs for any race of 1.25 miles.
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  3. #13
    Senior Member duk4me's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HuntinDawg View Post
    I was only 6 years old when that race was run and I did not see it, but the first time I did see that video I was in awe. I just showed it to my daughter yesterday. We have a grandson of Secretariat (retired race horse) on my dad's farm and I had told her (she's 9) that he is a grandson of Secretariat, but she didn't know who that was. She does now. After I showed her the Belmont footage she wanted to see the Derby and Preakness as well, which we also watched on YouTube. I would like to see another Triple Crown winner, but there will never be another Secretariat IMO. Did you know he set the record in all 3 races of the Triple Crown and still holds all 3? Also still holds the track record at Churchill Downs for any race of 1.25 miles.
    Not only that but his Belmont win is the fastest 1.50 miles ever run in America. Probably in the world but that is a hard one to substantiate. He ran the 1.50 miles in 2:24 this years was run in 2:30.7. A rule of thumb but not highly accurate is 5 lengths per second. So he would roughly have been 33 lengths ahead of this bunch.

    At his autopsy they measured his heart. I don't recall the measurements but it was considerably larger than the average tbred. His heart was huge in more ways than size though.
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  4. #14
    Senior Member Kevinismybrother's Avatar
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    Sham ran from the pack and closed hard in the shorter Derby and Preakness races, as I recall. The trainer tried a different strategy of getting out and running with the big horse in the Belmont, and clearly that was a mistake. The small field for this race was due to not many wanting to run for 3rd behind the horse of the decade and as 2tall mentioned, a horse that would have won the triple crown most other years.
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    Senior Member txrancher's Avatar
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    Truly a great race, unfortunately for the rest of the field one great horse showed up! After all the years it still makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck.
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  6. #16
    Senior Member HuntinDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by duk4me View Post
    At his autopsy they measured his heart. I don't recall the measurements but it was considerably larger than the average tbred. His heart was huge in more ways than size though.
    I just read about that yesterday. If I remember correctly they said the average thoroughbred heart was somewhere in the 7-8 pound range (extrapolated from comments) but there is an "x-factor" gene which can result in a much larger heart, which some great race horses have had, including a race horse from the late 1700's which had a 14 lb. heart. They did not weigh Secretariat's heart but the vet who did the necropsy said everyone just stared at it because it was the biggest they had ever seen and it was just perfect. The same vet did a necropsy on Sham a few years later and his heart was 18 lbs. Based on that he estimated Secretariat's heart around 22 lbs. It makes sense that those huge hearts can get the oxygenated blood to the muscles faster and in larger supply and I would think (no medical education here) that it would be a particular advantage in longer races.

    One of the crazy things about the Belmont he ran is that he appeared to be continuing to pull away all the way to the finish line even with no whip and no horse to challenge him and make him run harder. I remember hearing that the educated observers that day thought the jockey was blowing it based on how fast Secretariat was running the various intervals (1/4 mile, 1/2 mile, whatever)...they thought he would surely fade and get run down from behind. It had to be an astonishing thing to see live when you didn't already know the outcome.
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  7. #17
    Senior Member Jerry Beil's Avatar
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    I was 8 and remember watching it. Didn't realize how impressive it was at the time, but glad I remember it. I was at my grandparents house watching on black and white. Don't remember our family being that into horse racing and had no idea why everyone was for Secretatiat.
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  8. #18
    Senior Member road kill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HuntinDawg View Post
    I just read about that yesterday. If I remember correctly they said the average thoroughbred heart was somewhere in the 7-8 pound range (extrapolated from comments) but there is an "x-factor" gene which can result in a much larger heart, which some great race horses have had, including a race horse from the late 1700's which had a 14 lb. heart. They did not weigh Secretariat's heart but the vet who did the necropsy said everyone just stared at it because it was the biggest they had ever seen and it was just perfect. The same vet did a necropsy on Sham a few years later and his heart was 18 lbs. Based on that he estimated Secretariat's heart around 22 lbs. It makes sense that those huge hearts can get the oxygenated blood to the muscles faster and in larger supply and I would think (no medical education here) that it would be a particular advantage in longer races.

    One of the crazy things about the Belmont he ran is that he appeared to be continuing to pull away all the way to the finish line even with no whip and no horse to challenge him and make him run harder. I remember hearing that the educated observers that day thought the jockey was blowing it based on how fast Secretariat was running the various intervals (1/4 mile, 1/2 mile, whatever)...they thought he would surely fade and get run down from behind. It had to be an astonishing thing to see live when you didn't already know the outcome.
    ESPN did one of their documentaries (Sports Century) on the Secratariat.
    The Jockey (Ron Turcotte) and trainer talked about how they always had to hold him back.
    Turcotte said they all decided on this day to just let him run his own race.
    And he DID!


    There is a famous picture of Turcotte looking at the clock, and he is quoted as saying he thought Secratariat knew it was his day!

    I was in the service then, I remember watching, and at first it was pretty cool, the announcers began to panic, questiong the horse burning out.
    But he never did, he just kept accelerating, and pulling away.

    I do remember at some point you were just astonished, it was incredible to see.
    People were like in shock, we couldn't believe what we saw.

    The reason we watched is because it was a legit shot for the Triple Crown.

    No one expected this performance.
    Last edited by road kill; 06-10-2013 at 10:48 AM.
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  9. #19
    Senior Member twall's Avatar
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    I remember watching it. I was young enough I ddin't realize what I was watching. It has taken time to realize what the 1970's were to horse racing. By the tiem Seattle Slew and Affirmed won the Triple Crown I was much more interested.

    Tom
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  10. #20
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    I do remember seeing it and being excited as we were all pulling for him. Did not realize till a long time later how special that performance was. Still gives me goose bumps just thinking about it. One of the most amazing athletes of all times.
    Nate Baxter, DVM
    Lebanon, OH

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