Triple Crown of Thoroughbred racing by the numbers

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April 23rd, 2020

Although the Kentucky Derby has been postponed until September, racing fans can still look forward to a spectacular showdown during the first Saturday in May. Churchill Downs has teamed up with NBC and will be broadcasting a virtual derby featuring all 13 Triple Crown winners. The race will use data algorithms and historical handicapping information about each horse to determine the probability of their finishing positions.

Get ready for race day with this collection of scintillating stats and facts about Thoroughbred racing's most exclusive club.

0: Fillies who have won the Triple Crown.

1: Horses who have placed second in all three legs of the Triple Crown. That dubious distinction belongs to Alydar, who was narrowly defeated by Affirmed in all three races in 1978.

1 1/2: Length, in miles, of the Belmont Stakes, the longest of the three races in the Triple Crown.

2: Father-son duos to win the Triple Crown. That honor belongs to Gallant Fox (1930) and Omaha (1935). Both were trained by James Fitzsimmons.

2:24: Secretariat’s final time in the 1973 Belmont Stakes. It remains a record more than 45 years later.

13: Thoroughbreds that have won the Triple Crown since 1919, when Sir Barton became the first horse to capture the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes.

18: Age of Steve Cauthen in 1978, when he became the youngest jockey to win the Triple Crown. The Covington, Kentucky native won 2,794 races before he called it a career in 1992.

23: Horses that have won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness but not the Belmont. The most recent instance was California Chrome in 2014.

37: Years without a Triple Crown winner between 1978 and 2015. It remains the longest gap in Triple Crown history.

52: Age of Mike Smith in 2018, when he became the oldest jockey to win the Triple Crown. The son of a jockey, Smith began racing when he was just 11 years old.

1,200: Weight, in pounds, of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat.

116,857: Career earnings, in dollars, of Sir Barton, the inaugural winner of the Triple Crown. Adjusted for inflation, that amounts to $2 million in 2020.

3,798,000: Career earnings, in dollars, of Justify, the most recent winner of the Triple Crown.

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