On this date in 2005, tragedy almost shook the horse racing world. Instead, one incredible horse defied all laws of physics and won the 130th Preakness Stakes.
Two weeks after Giacomo stunned the horse racing world as a 50-1 winner of the Kentucky Derby, Afleet Alex was prepared to bounce back from a bad ride at Churchill Downs. Not only did he avenge the loss, he pulled off a minor miracle around the final turn.
Poised to pull ahead after an impressive move at the start of the turn, Afleet Alex was bumped by Scrappy T as the horses entered the stretch. For a moment, the colt was only running on two legs. Jockey Jeremy Rose somehow held on as Afleet Alex rose to his feet, then accelerated for a dominant finish at Pimlico.
15 years later, I still don’t know how the horse did it.
The sport could have suffered a black eye. Instead, Afleet Alex made one of the most memorable run in the history of the second leg of the Triple Crown.
In my lifetime only one other horse can compete with Afleet Alex’s Preakness greatness, Justify. I don’t know if he ran a better race because it was so foggy on that muddy day in Baltimore. Watching the horses emerge from the fog near the finish line is one of the most exhilarating moments in the sport’s history.