Eight Interesting Horse Racing Facts You May Not Know

Good Evening!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s is an interesting one where I look at 8 facts you may or may not know about horse racing, so without further ado, let’s get right into them!

First up, the fastest recorded speed for a thoroughbred racehorse was recorded on May 14th in 2008 at Penn National Racecourse in Pennsylvania. Winning Brew is a mare who was born in 2006 and was put into training with Francis Vitale by owner Ronald Francoeur. At two years old she broke the Guinness World Record for being the fastest racehorse in the world when she covered a two mile distance (402 metres) in 20.57 seconds, which averages 70.76 kilometers per hour which is roughly 43.97 miles per hour.

The biggest racehorse in history is believed to be Holy Roller. The gelding was 18.1 hands high and was estimated to weigh 1,800 pounds (around 660 pounds heavier than average) – he could not be weighed on a scale as he was so big, therefore they could only estimate how much he weighed. His head along weighing in at 110 pounds. His feet were trimmed as short as possible to fit into a size 8 shoe – 3 sizes bigger than a typical racehorse.

However it is important to note that in December of 2020 the owners of a horse called Shinshinto came out to say they believe their horse is the new tallest standing at 18.2 hands – however this is yet to be confirmed.

To put this into perspective, Frankel was considered to be a decent sized horse at 16.1 hands whilst dual Grand National winner Tiger Roll measures 15.2 hands.

It is no secret that in horse racing, jockeys need to be carrying the lowest weight they possibly can. In 1841, what is believed to be the lowest weight in history was made when a jockey known as Kitchener rode in the Chester Cup on a horse called Red Deer where he weighed just 2 stone and 12 pounds. The saddle and bridle etc weighed 1 stone 2 pounds which made the weight up to the 4 stone which the was handicapped. It is believed his regular body weight was 48 pounds – 3 stone and 6 pounds, so he lost 8 pounds for this race.

The slowest recorded time for winning a race was achieved by Never Mind II in 1945 when he finished a two mile race in 11 minutes and 28 seconds. Never Mind II refused at a fence and was abandoned by his jockey, however his jockey heard that all of the other runners in the race had either fallen or been disqualified so therefore he returned to his horse and they finished the race at their own leisure.

One of America’s most famous jockeys George Edward Arcaro – better known as Eddie Arcaro – rode 250 losers before he finally won his first race. He then went on to win another 4,778 races in his career which included each of the races making up the American Triple Crown. He was introduced into the American Thoroughbred horse racing Hall of Fame and has won more American Classic Races in history than any other jockey and is the only jockey in history to have won the American Triple Crown Twice, once in 1941 and again in 1948. He is widely known in America as the greatest jockey in American horse racing.

A jockey called Levi Barlingume raced competitively until he was 80 years old. His career ended in 1932 when he broke his leg during a race – other than this injury he had no plans to retire from the saddle just yet so who knows how old he would’ve went on to be still riding.

The record for the longest living thoroughbred was believed to be a horse called Tango Duke who was an Australian horse who passed away at the age of 42 in 1978, however stud records in Australia do not show any record of a horse being registered with this name – so it is believed he was not a pure thoroughbred and that is why. The official longest living thoroughbred is Prospect Point who was born in Kentucky USA, however ended up in South Carolina. He passed away in 2016 at the age of 38 years old.

The oldest winning National Hunt horse is Sonny Somers who in 1980, won at Lingfield Park at 18 years old, beating 5 and 6 year olds that were in the race. He was trained by Fred Winter and Ben De Hann rode him for his record breaking race.

So there we have it, 8 interesting horse racing facts you may or may not have known. I find these posts so interesting to look into and from the figures whenever I post something like this, so do my readers. I hope you all enjoyed this one and I will see you all Saturday a 11am for a new post!