This excellent but luckless racer won six Grade 1 races in a single season and was the top money earner of that year in North America, yet was left out during year-end championship voting despite having beaten both the Horse of the Year and the champion of one of the divisions for which he was eligible during the course of his campaign. In the other division for which he was eligible, he posted four Grade 1 wins to the champion's two. Name him.
TJ is right. Polynesian, the 1947 American champion sprinter, suffered an attack of azoturia, or "tying up" as a 2-year-old. While he recovered from his illness, he developed a phobia about moving, apparently fearing that it would cause him pain. A hornet attack in his paddock started him running again. He was never enthusiastic about training, to the point that he ran most of his races when no more than half-fit, but his raw talent was right up there with the best.
This American champion may have owed his successful racing career to a hornet attack, which inadvertently cured a phobia about running or even walking caused by a severe case of "tying up." Name him and the year and category in which he received his championship.
Halo was a cribber and a thoroughly nasty-tempered individual to boot, but he became a two-time leading American sire after being rejected for purchase by Irving Allen. He handed his male line on to Sunday Silence in Japan and Southern Halo in Argentina.
English horsemen have a strong prejudice against cribbers, and when Irving Allen found out that the American colt he was trying to purchase for export to England had this vice, he backed out of the deal. Cribber or not, the colt proved to be England's loss and America's gain as he became a champion sire. Name him.
Sunday Silence won the 1989 Kentucky Derby (USA-G1), Preakness Stakes (USA-G1) and Breeders' Cup Classic (USA-G1) to become the first horse to win two legs of the Triple Crown plus the BC Classic in the same year. Since then, California Chrome has come closest to duplicating the feat, winning the 2014 Derby and Preakness and finishing a close third in the Classic.
If American Pharoah wins the 2015 Breeders' Cup Classic (USA-G1), he will become the first horse to sweep the three American Triple Crown races plus what is now the nation's most important all-aged race. Only one colt has won two legs of the Triple Crown plus the Breeders' Cup Classic in the same year. Name him.
Count Fleet may have been scared of the dark, but he was no scaredy-cat on the track. John Hertz was lucky to keep the 1943 Triple Crown winner for his wife's stable, though---he offered the colt for sale as a 2-year-old for US$4,500 with no takers. Count Fleet was both a champion sire and champion broodmare sire after his racing days ended.
Nobody wanted this colt when he was offered for sale at just US$4,500. He had less than ideal conformation, a rambunctious disposition and was apparently afraid of the dark, but that didn't stop him from becoming one of the all-time greats and an important sire. Name him.
I'm Avalyn Hunter, an author, pedigree researcher and longtime racing fan with a particular interest in Thoroughbred mares and their contributions to the history of the breed.