Count Fleet Triple Crown Winner

Count Fleet
Jockey: Johnny Longden

Trainer: Don Cameron

Owner: Fannie Hertz

Career record: 21-16-4-1

Count Fleet was the 6th Triple Crown Winner in 1943, ridden by John Longden. He was a brown colt sired by 1928 Kentucky Derby winner Reigh Count. His dam was a mare named Quickly who had a talent for sprinting. He was born on March 24, 1940, at Stoner Creek farm in Paris, Kentucky.

Owned by John D. Hertz who initially didn’t think much of the colt and tried to sell him twice. But jockey Johnny Longden convinced him to keep the colt. Little did Mr. Hertz know, that Count Fleet would turn into the sixth U.S Triple Crown champion.

Count Fleet gained respect with a six-length victory in the Champagne Stakes in which he set a new track record. Then he followed this up by beating the best horses in the country and equaling the racetrack record at the Pimlico Futurity. Then in the Walden Stakes, he won by more than thirty lengths. At the end of the season, he had won 10 out of his 15 races and was never out of the money.

Count Fleet’s Road to the Triple Crown

In 1943 Count Fleet dominated North American racing, never losing a race. Leading up to the Kentucky Derby he won the important Wood Memorial but injured himself in the process. Luckily, he recovered in time to take the Kentucky Derby by three lengths. Then he went to Baltimore, Maryland, where he dominated the Preakness Stakes, winning by eight lengths. Before the Belmont Stakes, he won the Withers Stakes, and then he captured the Triple Crown by winning the Belmont Stakes by twenty-five lengths, a record margin that stood until 1973. That year he was voted Champion Three Year Old and named American Horse of the Year by Turf and Sport Digest.

This Triple Crown champion had a successful racing and breeding career. He retired to stud having won 16 out of 21 races and went on to enjoy great success as a sire. He sired 38 stakes winners, including Kentucky Derby winner Count Turf, and Belmont Stakes winners Counterpoint and One Count. Count Fleet died on December 3, 1973, and was buried at Stoner Creek Farm in Paris, Kentucky.

Race record

1942

  • Pimlico Futurity Winner (USA, 8.5FD, Pimlico; equaled track record 1:43-3/5)
  • Champagne Stakes Winner (USA, 8FD, Belmont; his new track record of 1:34-4/5 was also a new world record for a juvenile)
  • Walden Stakes Winner (USA, 8.5FD, Pimlico)
  • Wakefield Stakes Winner (USA, 5.75FD, Empire City)
  • 2nd Washington Park Futurity (USA, 6FD, Washington Park)
  • 2nd East View Stakes (USA, 5.75FD, Empire City)
  • 3rd Futurity Stakes (USA, 6.5FD, Belmont)

1943

  • Won Wood Memorial Stakes (USA, 8.5FD, Jamaica)
  • Kentucky Derby Winner (USA, 10FD, Churchill Downs)
  • Preakness Stakes Winner (USA, 9.5FD, Pimlico)
  • Withers Stakes Winner (USA, 8FD, Belmont)
  • Belmont Stakes Winner (USA, 12FD, Belmont)

Count Fleet Honors

  • National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame (inducted in 1961)
  • American Horse of the Year (1943)
  • American champion 2-year-old male (1942)
  • American champion 3-year-old male (1943)
COUNT FLEET WAS THE 6TH TRIPLE CROWN WINNER IN 1943

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