Today in history: Secretariat wins greatest Triple Crown ever on June 9th, 1973

American Pharoah Vs. Secretariat: Who Would Win?

American Pharoah ended a 37-year-old drought on Saturday with his resolving Triple Crown victory. But once the cheers softened and the rose garlands were put away, attention once again turned to the horse that caught the world's attention 42 years ago.

Secretariat is widely regarded as the greatest racing horse of all time. He even landed in the 35th spot on ESPN's greatest North American athlete of the 20th century list, ahead of Lawrence Taylor, Mickey Mantle, Billie Jean King and many, many more.

Secretariat - 1973 Belmont Stakes
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Today in history: Secretariat wins greatest Triple Crown ever on June 9th, 1973

June 9th, 1973 is the moment when Secretariat cemented his place in history with the Belmont run that still brings tears to sports' fans eyes today. Secretariat won by an astounding, record-breaking 31 lengths. He came in two and half seconds faster than American Pharoah, which may as well be hours when you consider that Secretariat finished that grueling 1.5 mile race in 2 minutes and 24 seconds.

"Big Red" sliced three seconds off of previous track record set by Gallant Man in 1957. Jockey Ron Turcotte famously claimed he lost control of Secretariat during the Belmont and the horse sprinted for victory on his own.

"The Horse of the Century" was retired and put to stud that November. He lived in Kentucky until he fell ill and was euthanized 1989 at age 19.

An autopsy revealed Secretariat's heart was nearly three times larger than the average Thoroughbred's heart. It was estimated to be 22 pounds.

If you want your average half-pound heart to swell with pride, watch Secretariat's epic run:

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