June 26, 1938: Nearco ended his career a perfect 14-for-14 by winning the Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp.
June 26, 1986: Jockey Sandy Hawley won his 5,000th career race, aboard Mighty Massa, at Canterbury Downs.
June 26, 1992: Jockey Dave Gall became the eighth rider in history to ride 6,000 winners when he rode Nana’s Nice Boy to victory at Fairmount Park.
June 26, 1994: Jockey Chris McCarron rode his 6,000th career winner, Andestine, in the Milady Handicap at Hollywood Park. He was the 11th rider to reach 6,000 and the third-youngest, behind Bill Shoemaker and Laffit Pincay Jr.
June 26, 2000: Hall of Fame trainer Lucien Laurin, conditioner of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat, died at the age of 88.
June 26, 2001: The NTRA and Breeders’ Cup announced that the Breeders’ Cup would now be known as the Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. It was also announced that Bessemer Trust Company had signed on as title sponsor of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
June 27, 1860: The Queen’s Plate, the oldest continuously run stakes race in North America, was first run. Don Juan was the winner, after winning two of the three heats that comprised the event.
June 27, 1932: Calumet Farm recorded its first victory in a Thoroughbred race with two-year-old Warren Jr., who won by a nose at Arlington Park to earn $850.
June 27, 1986: Jockey Kent Desormeaux rode in his first race ever, finishing third aboard a $2,500 claimer named Ducknest Coal Mine, at odds of 35-1, in the second race at Evangeline Downs.
June 28, 1977: Steve Cauthen, on his first day as a journeyman jockey, won with his first three mounts at Belmont Park.
June 28, 1989: Arlington International Racecourse opened in Arlington Heights, Ill. It had been rebuilt after a fire destroyed the old facility, July 31, 1985.
June 29, 1968: Jockey Eddie Delahoussaye won his first race, at Evangeline Downs, aboard Brown Shill.
June 29, 1968: Gamely, Princessnesian and Desert Law–all owned by William Haggin Perry and trained by Jim Maloney–finished 1, 1A and 1B, respectively, in the Vanity Handicap at Hollywood Park.
June 29, 1969: Jockey Ray Sibille won his first career race, at Evangeline Downs.
June 29, 1983: Jockey Angel Cordero Jr. won his 5,000th career race, aboard Another Rodger, in the ninth race at Belmont Park. He was the fourth rider in history, behind John Longden, Bill Shoemaker and Laffit Pincay Jr., to hit that mark.
June 30, 1973: Three weeks after he won the Triple Crown, Secretariat scored another victory, a nine-length win in the Arlington Invitational Stakes at Arlington Park, where he was sent off at the shortest odds in his career, 1-20. With no place or show wagering on the four-horse race, which was run with a three-horse field against Secretariat, the track had a minus win pool of $17,941. More than 40,000 spectators turned out for the event.
June 30, 1978: Spectacular Bid won his first race, at Pimlico, by 3 1/4 lengths.
June 30, 1990: Retired jockey Bill Shoemaker won his first race as a trainer, sending two-year-old filly Tempest Cloud to her maiden victory at Hollywood Park.
June 30, 1991: One year after his first victory as a trainer, Bill Shoemaker recorded his first Grade I win, with Alcando in the Beverly Hills Handicap at Hollywood Park.
July 1, 1966: Jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. won with his first mount in the United States, at Arlington Park, aboard two-year-old filly Teacher’s Art, owned and bred by Fred W. Hooper.
July 1, 1998: Hall of Fame jockey Sandy Hawley retired from race riding after competing in the Dominion Day Handicap at Woodbine Racecourse.
July 1, 2000: Jockey Mark Guidry became the 36th jockey in history to win 4,000 races when he rode Manitowish to victory in the fifth race at Arlington International Racecourse.
July 1, 2001: Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel won two Grade I races on opposite coasts, on different surfaces, both via disqualification. First, Senure was elevated to the top spot in the United Nations Handicap, a turf race at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J., following the disqualification of With Anticipation for a bumping incident in midstretch. Then, just 30 minutes later and on the same CBS telecast, Aptitude was placed first after Futural was disqualified for a similar infraction in the Hollywood Gold Cup, a top dirt race at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, Calif.
July 2, 1989: Jockey Steve Cauthen became the first rider in history to sweep the world’s four major derbies after winning the Irish Derby with Old Vic. He had previously won the Kentucky Derby with Affirmed (1978), the Epsom Derby with Slip Anchor (1985) and Reference Point (1987) and the French Derby with Old Vic (1989).
July 3, 1937: The Del Mar Turf Club, with crooner Bing Crosby as president and actor Pat O’Brien as one of the club officers, opened for racing.
July 3, 1977: Seattle Slew’s nine-race winning streak came to an end in the Swaps Stakes at Hollywood Park, when he finished fourth, beaten 16 lengths by J.O. Tobin.
July 3, 1982: D. Wayne Lukas-trained Landaluce, ridden by Laffit Pincay Jr., won the first of her five consecutive victories at Hollywood Park. The daughter of Seattle Slew, owned by Barry Beal and Lloyd French, died of a viral infection in November of that year, but was posthumously voted champion two-year-old filly of 1982.
July 4, 1954: Two-year-old Ribot won his first race, the Premio Tramuschio. He concluded his career in 1956, with 16 wins in as many starts.
July 4, 1972: Two-year-old Secretariat, ridden by Paul Feliciano, ran fourth to winner Herbull in his racing debut, blocked badly throughout the race, at Aqueduct. It was the poorest placing of Secretariat’s career.
July 4, 1976: Charlie Whittingham swept the top three spots in the American Handicap at Hollywood Park with his trainees King Pellinore, Riot in Paris and Caucasus. On July 26, he repeated the feat in the Sunset Handicap, with Caucasus first, King Pellinore second and Riot in Paris third.
July 4, 1978: Trainer D. Wayne Lukas won his first $100,000 stakes race–over the turf–taking the American Handicap with Effervescing, ridden by Laffit Pincay Jr., at Hollywood Park.
July 4, 1998: Elusive Quality ran the fastest mile in history in the Poker Handicap at Belmont Park. The five-year-old horse was timed in 1:31 3/5 over a firm turf course.
July 4, 2000: Hall of Fame jockey Russell Baze scored his 7,000 career victory aboard This Is the Moment at the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton, Calif. Baze became the sixth jockey to join the 7,000-win club.
July 5, 1991: Jockey Ray Sibille won his 3,000th career race, aboard Sporting Surf at Pleasanton.
July 6, 1975: Locust Hill Farm’s undefeated filly Ruffian engaged Kentucky Derby winner Foolish Pleasure in a match race at Belmont Park. Racing on the lead, Ruffian sustained a severe leg injury and was pulled up by jockey Jacinto Vasquez. The filly was euthanized the following day when efforts to save her proved futile.
July 6, 1977: In the second of their 10 meetings, Alydar defeated Affirmed to win the Great American Stakes at Belmont Park. This was the first of Alydar’s three victories over Affirmed.
July 7, 1934: Mary Hirsch became the first female to be licensed as a Thoroughbred trainer, in Illinois. Hirsch subsequently was licensed in Michigan that year and two years later, on April 9, she was licensed by The Jockey Club to train in New York.
July 8, 2000: General Express set a world record when he went five furlongs on the turf in :54.60 in the Decathlon Stakes at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J. General Express eclipsed the mark of :54.97 set by Klassy Briefcase in a Monmouth allowance race on June 8, 1991.