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Triple Crown Near Misses

Preakness/Belmont Stakes Winners

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Afleet Alex wins the 2005 Belmont Stakes

Afleet Alex wins the 2005 Belmont Stakes

© Cindy Pierson Dulay

Of the 7 horses that did not run in the Kentucky Derby, 5 of these races took place before 1900. Cloverbrook in 1877 was owned by E.A. Clabaugh, trained by J. Walden, and ridden by C. Holloway. That year the Preakness was run 2 days before the Kentucky Derby won by Baden-Baden who skipped the Preakness and finished 3rd in the Belmont.

In 1878, Duke of Magenta also won the Withers, Travers, Kenner, Sequel, Harding, Jerome, Annual, Dixie, and Breckinridge Stakes and was named champion 3-year-old. The Preakness and Kentucky Derby were run during the same week with Day Star winning the Derby but skipping the Preakness and Belmont.

In 1880 Grenada was purchased as a yearling for $1,300. He also won the Potomac, Lorillard, Travers, Jerome, Dixie, and Coney Island Derby and was named champion 3-year old male. There were 10 days between the Kentucky Derby and Preakness. Fonso won the Derby but did not run in the Preakness or Belmont.

In 1881 Saunterer also finished 3rd in the Tidal Stakes. Hindoo won the Kentucky Derby and did not run in either the Preakness or Belmont.

In 1895 Belmar also won the Manhattan Handicap. Kentucky Derby winner Halma did not run in either the Preakness or Belmont.

In 1920, Man O'War also won Withers in between the Preakness and Belmont. He did not run in the Kentucky Derby because of his owner's issues with travel outside the Mid-Atlantic area that early in the season. Paul Jones won the Kentucky Derby and did not run in either the Preakness or Belmont.

In 1922 Pillory also finished 2nd Withers and 3rd in the Jockey Club Gold Cup. That year the Kentucky Derby was on the same day as the Preakness. Morvich won the Kentucky Derby and did not run in the Belmont.

In 1940 Bimelech was the champion 3-year old colt with a lifetime record of 15 starts and 11 wins. He finished 2nd in Kentucky Derby to Gallahadion (3rd Preakness and 5th Belmont). In between his Preakness and Belmont wins was a loss in the Withers.

In 1949 Capot was the Champion 3-year-old colt with 28 starts and 12 wins. He was 2nd in the Kentucky Derby to Ponder (5th Preakness and 2nd Belmont) after going to the front early. They also met in the Peter Pan between the Preakness and Belmont where Ponder won and Capot was 7th.

In 1953 Native Dancer was the Champion 3-year old colt. He was also the champion 2-year old colt and Horse of the Year at age 4. He was 2nd in the Kentucky Derby to Dark Star (5th Preakness) after a troubled race. Dark Star bowed a tendon in the Preakness and never raced again.

In 1955 Nashua was a champion 2-year old colt and champion 3-year old colt and horse of the year at 3. He finished 2nd in the Kentucky Derby to Swaps who skipped the Preakness and Belmont due to an injury. In December 1955 Nashua met and defeated Swaps in a match race by 6 lengths.

In 1967 Damascus was the 3-year old champion colt and also Horse of the Year, with 32 lifetime starts and 21 wins. He was 3rd in the Kentucky Derby to Proud Clarion (3rd in the Preakness and 4th in the Belmont). The loss in the Derby has been attributed to the high humidity. Damascus became nervous while being saddled kicking his legs up and never settling in the race.

In 1974 Little Current was the 3-year old champion colt with 16 lifetime starts and 4 wins. He was 5th in the Kentucky Derby to Cannonade (3rd Preakness and 3rd Belmont). Little Current never raced after the Belmont and was retired due to an injury. He died on January 19, 2003, at age 32 and was the oldest living winner of a Triple Crown race at the time.

In 1988 Risen Star was the 1988 Champion 3-Year-Old colt with 11 lifetime starts and 8 wins. He was 3rd to Winning Colors (who was 3rd in the Preakness and 6th in the Belmont) in the Kentucky Derby. He won the Preakness by 1-1/4 lengths and the Belmont by 14-3/4 lengths.

In 1991 Hansel was the champion 3-year old colt. In the Kentucky Derby he was a well-beaten 10th to Strike the Gold (6th Preakness and 2nd Belmont). The Belmont was his last win as he tore his tendon of his left foreleg in the Travers and was retired.

In 1994 Tabasco Cat finished 6th to Go for Gin (2nd in both the Preakness and Belmont) in the Kentucky Derby before winning the Preakness and Belmont.

In 2001 Point Given was Horse of the Year and champion 3-year-old colt. In the Kentucky Derby he finished 5th to Monarchos (6th Preakness and 3rd Belmont). He won the Preakness by 2-1/4 lengths and the Belmont Stakes by 12-1/4 lengths. He became the first Thoroughbred ever to win four million-dollar races in a row (Haskell, Preakness, Belmont, and Travers). He was just one of five horses since 1900 to win the Preakness, Belmont, and Travers (others are Man O'War, Damascus, Whirlaway, and Native Dancer.)

In 2005 Afleet Alex was champion 3-year old colt with 8 wins in 12 starts. At 2 he won the Sanford and Hopeful Stakes and was 2nd in the Champagne and Breeders' Cup Juvenile. At 3 he won the Preakness, Belmont, Arkansas Derby, and Mountain Valley Stakes. In the Kentucky Derby he vied for the lead in deep stretch and wasn't quite good enough and finished 3rd, 1 length behind 50-1 longshot Giacomo (3rd Preakness and 7th Belmont) and 70-1 longshot Closing Argument. Despite his convincing Belmont Stakes win, an injury sustained in a collision with Scrappy T at the top of the stretch in the Preakness was found and he was retired.

Introduction
Kentucky Derby/Preakness Winners through 1979
Kentucky Derby/Preakness Winners 1980-2008
Preakness/Belmont Stakes Winners
Kentucky Derby/Belmont Stakes Winners

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