Triple Crown Diary Secretariat’s 1973 Belmont Stakes

On April 20, 1986, in a playoff game that featured Larry Bird’s Celtics and Michael Jordan’s Bulls, Jordan scored a playoff record 63 points, after which Larry Bird was quoted “I think it’s just God disguised as Michael Jordan”.

That was not the first time the divine light was breathed into an athlete, as anyone who was a spectator at Belmont Park on June 9, 1973, can attest.

Coming off the heels of two track record-breaking performances in both the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes, the Belmont was expected to be a coronation for Secretariat, though some still gave rival Sham an upset shot. What even his most ardent backers did not expect was the breathtaking manner in which he completed the third jewel of the Triple Crown.

Secretariat responded by turning in a tremendous 31 length victory in that year’s Belmont Stakes in a breathtaking time of 2:24 flat, a world record which stands to this day and may never be broken. Jockey Ron Turcotte said later that he was…

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