Bit by Bit Blog

7 Things You Should Know About Saratoga Race Course and its History

We are on the eve of our adventures at Saratoga Race Course and it has inspired to do some digging into the history and stories of one of the oldest race tracks in America. After scanning through countless industry pubs and the official Saratoga website, we found a few that we just had to share!

1. The term "upset", meaning an unexpected defeat of an opponent that's considered to be more formidable, was coined at Saratoga. Man o' War went into the Sanford Stakes in 1919 undefeated and lost to a horse named Upset.

2. Saratoga also holds the ominous nickname "Graveyard of Champions" because of the many upsets that too place on the track Man o' War and Triple Crown winners Gallant Fox and American Pharoah were all defeated at Saratoga.

3. Films such as "Seabiscuit," and "The Horse Whisperer"have scenes filmed at Saratoga. A scene in Ian Fleming's James Bond novel, "Diamonds are Forever," features a scene at the Saratoga Race Course as well!

4. In 1941,  Whirlaway became the only Triple Crown winner to also win the Travers, even to this day.

5. August 2, 1864:  Kentucky wins the first Travers Stakes, the first race held on the new Saratoga Race Course

6. “Health, History, Horses” is the well-known slogan for Saratoga Springs.

7. The current track record for The Whitney is held by Lawyer Ron with a time of 1:46.64 from the 2007 race.