Man O’ War Stakes

Man O’ War Stakes 2013 | The Man O’War Stakes takes place on 14th July this year as part of the Belmont summer schedule. Last year’s race was won by Point of Entry with the Aidan O’Brien-trained favourite Treasure Beach only fifth. Center Divider and Rosie Napravnik set the pace and held off all bar the winner with Hudson Steele running into third. Jose Lezcano rode a confident race on Point of Entry and the 4-year-old had three and a half lengths to spare at the line.

Online betting on the Man o War Stakes is available at Sportsbook.com (US friendly).

The Man O’ War Stakes is a $500,000 Grade I race held at Belmont Park in New York when it was run in two divisions. It is named in honour of one of the greatest racehorses of all time. During his career, Man O’War won all but one of his 21 races and $249,465 in prize money. The race is open to three-year-old’s and upwards over a distance of one and three-eighths of a mile. The race has attracted some top class European runners over the years including Fantastic Light and Daylami. It is often an excellent guide to the Breeders’ Cup Turf.

The first Man O’ War took place in 1959 when it was run as a handicap. The race was won in 1973 by the great Secretariat. In 2008 the Man O’ War was moved from Belmont’s fall schedule into its summer schedule.

The Winners

The first winners of the race were Tudor Era and Dotted Line in 1959 (two divisions). In 1973 Secretariat won the race and was followed by Dahlia (1974) and Snow Knight (1975). European runners have been successful in the race in relatively recent years. Defensive Play won in 1990 for trainer Guy Harwood and jockey Pat Eddery with the French-trained Millkom winning in 1995. Magistretti was another winner for France in 2004, trained by Patrick Biancone for leading owner Michael Tabor. Fantastic Light won the race for Godolphin in 1998 and Sheikh Mohammed’s racing team won again in 200 with Daylami. The talented grey raced from 1996 to1999 and won seven Group 1/Grade I races. In 1999 he was awarded the United States’ Eclipse Award for Outstanding Male Turf Horse and the Cartier Racing Award for European Horse of the Year.

Brian Meehan trained Red Rocks to win the race in 2008 whilst Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien enjoyed his first success in the race with Cape Blanco in 2011. Cape Blanco was also the winner of the 2010 Irish Derby and Irish Champion Stakes. He proved very successful in America, also winning the Arlington Million at Arlington Park and Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational Stakes at Belmont Park. Unfortunately he sustained a fractured knee in the Joe Hirsch and was retired to stud after the race.

In the process of winning the Man O’War, Jamie Spencer’s mount denied Gio Ponti a famous third victory in the race and was voted the American Champion Male Turf Horse for 2011. Gio Ponti finished second to the great mare Goldikova in the Breeders’ Cup. He earned 6.1 million dollars in 28 starts, making him one of the biggest earners in US racing history.

The Records

The fastest time at the current distance was set by Better Talk Now in 2005 (2:11.65). Secretariat set the fastest time over the previous distance of 1 ½ miles in 1973. Three horses have won the race twice; Majesty’s Prince (1983, 1984) Solar Splendor (1991, 1992) and With Anticipation (2001, 2002).
Rokeby Stable have been the most successful owners with three victories (1970, 1971 and 1986). The most successful jockey in the event has been Jorge Velasquez with five victories (1968, 1969, 1970, 1975, 1979). MacKenzie Miller trained the winner on four occasions (1966, 1969, 1975 and 1986).

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