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  • Patricia McQueen

Other Secretariat Stakes Winners

Updated: Mar 11

By my count, Secretariat sired 62 stakes winners (I include a few stakes winners in other countries who are not recognized as stakes winners by our Jockey Club). I was fortunate enough to photograph 31 of them; some I saw at the races when I was just learning photography in the mid-1980s and others I visited at farms.


Other blog articles here cover Secretariat’s nine G1 stakes winners (I saw all nine of them!) and the three stakes-winning “supermares” that produced great sires. The articles about Secretariat’s final crop and the last Secretariats also include Secretariat stakes winners. That’s 14 right there. This article covers the remaining 17 stakes winners that I’ve personally seen and photographed; they are listed in alphabetical order.


Their stories are told in much more detail in Secretariat’s Legacy, with just a few highlights here. Photos are in the accompanying gallery, which in most cases includes photos not in the book.


Academy Award

A foal of 1986, Academy Award didn’t start until he was four due to an early injury, and ultimately won five of 19 races at four and five. He seemed to put all his troubles behind him with a breakthrough win in the prestigious Early Times Manhattan Handicap the day before the 1991 Belmont Stakes. He set a new stakes record in the race, but came up lame afterwards and was retired. Academy Award was the only son of Secretariat to stand at his sire’s home, Claiborne Farm. He had some success there, but eventually moved to Ohio, where he became a leading Ohio-based sire. He sired 10 stakes winners, including a champion in Brazil. He was also popular in sport-horse circles, and sired leading show jumper Caped Crusader.



Lt. Pinkerton
Academy Award

Cinegita

In Secretariat’s third crop was a bay filly purchased as a yearling by trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Named Cinegita, she became the second of seven Secretariat stakes winners handled by the Hall of Fame trainer. As a 3-year-old filly in 1980, she won the G3 Railbird Stakes at Hollywood Park for her third win in seven starts. She raced the seven furlongs in a very rapid 1:20 4/5, only a second off of the American record for the distance. It was her final start and she was off to the breeding shed. Like her stablemate Terlingua, Cinegita would become a great broodmare, as both became foundation mares for Overbrook Farm.


Clever Secret

Yet another Lukas-trained Secretariat stakes winner, Clever Secret wasn’t as talented as some of the others, but still managed to win three stakes races during a career that saw him win eight of 42 starts over four years. A foal of 1984, Clever Secret won three in a row in the winter of 1986-87, including the Atherton Stakes at Bay Meadows. A few months later, he won the Lamplighter Handicap at Monmouth, then finished fourth in the Haskell to the best 3-year-olds in the country, behind Bet Twice, Alysheba and Lost Code. As a stallion in Maryland, Clever Secret struggled, and ended up in the Dominican Republic. There, he sired four champions.


D’Accord

One of the top 2-year-olds of 1981 was a son of Secretariat out of the superlative broodmare Fanfreluche. After almost falling down in his first start at Belmont Park, he rebounded to break his maiden by 15 lengths at that track. Next was a 12-length victory at Keeneland, and he followed that with a 7 ½-length romp in the G2 Breeders’ Futurity. After a short break, he returned with dull performances early in his 3-year-old year; he was incubating an infection that compromised his ability. After recovering, D’Accord came back from that to win both his remaining starts, and was retired early in his 4-year-old year. He entered stud in New York, where he was regularly among the top 10 sires; he was among the best of Secretariat’s sire sons. .


Whispered Secret
D'Accord

Fine Spirit

Fine Spirit was one of seven stakes winners in Secretariat’s 1982 foal crop. She was so impressive in her maiden victory at two (winning by 13 lengths in very fast time) that she went off as the second choice in the very first Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies against far more experienced runners. She was well placed early on and finished fourth (awarded third with the disqualification of the winner); it was the best finish of any of the favorites, and excellent for an inexperienced filly in a full field. She had talent, but ran into a lot of bad luck in her ensuing starts. She finally got her well-deserved stakes win in the 1985 Cascapedia Handicap at Santa Anita.


Fleet Secretariat

A foal of 1981, Fleet Secretariat began her career in the competitive Southern California market. It took her 10 tries to break her maiden, finally doing so as a 3-year-old at Hollywood Park. She won twice more in California before heading to the inaugural season at Minnesota’s Canterbury Downs in 1985. It was at that track the next year where she became a stakes winner, taking the Burnsville Handicap, defeating G1 winner Rascal Lass in the process. In total, Fleet Secretariat made 38 starts, and passed along her durability to her foals, including two stakes winners.


Golden Highlights

Thirty of Secretariat’s stakes winners were successful on the turf course. One was Golden Highlights, born in 1979. As a 3-year-old, she won two straight races on the Arlington Park grass before moving to the Louisiana circuit. She placed in four stakes there before recording her only stakes win in the 1983 Sooner Stakes at Louisiana Downs. As a broodmare, she produced stakes winner Fariedah, and shared a field with Secrettame at Mare Haven Farm.


Office Wife

Another Secretariat who preferred the turf was Office Wife, a foal of 1977. She was unplaced in her only start in France at age three, then had much more success after returning to the U.S. She placed in several stakes races on the New York/New Jersey circuit before getting her stakes win in the 1982 Modesty Handicap at Arlington Park. As a broodmare, she only produced five foals. The best was Dance Treat, a multiple G3 stakes winner in France.


Pancho Villa

One of Secretariat’s most talented sons never achieved Grade 1 glory, yet he was brilliant on his best days. Pancho Villa was a full brother to Terlingua, and shared some of her speed at sprint distances. A member of Secretariat’s great 1982 crop, he won four stakes races at three, including a spectacular run in the Bay Shore (a race his sire won in 1973) that left veteran turf writers in awe. He also defeated champion Precisionist in the National Sprint Championship at Hollywood Park. Pancho Villa’s racing career lasted barely more than a year; an injury in his first start at four sent him to the breeding shed. He was one of Secretariat’s better stallion sons, siring G1 winner Do It With Style and champions in Panama and the Dominican Republic.


Sakiyah
Pancho Villa

Pretty Secretary

This pretty gray was one of five Secretariat fillies to win at least one stakes race in France. A Kentucky-bred foal of 1986, she began her career in France with four unplaced runs at two and three before winning her fifth start in the summer of 1989. After finishing second in two more races that year, she returned at four to win three times, including her only stakes win, the Grand Prix de Clairefontaine. Sent back to America, she was unplaced in four more starts.

Sifounas

A member of Secretariat’s second crop born in 1976, Sifounas set a world record for an auction weanling, bringing $370,000. Sent to France, he was close in two starts at two, then broke his maiden at Chantilly in his second start at three. Stakes-placed in France and Italy at three, he became a stakes winner in Italy as a 4-year-old. That was in the G2 Premio Ellington in Rome at about 1½ miles. Fortunately for me, he went to stud in Kentucky, so I visited him during my pilgrimage to see Secretariat in 1982. Sifounas was a disappointment as a sire, but he did have a following as a sport-horse sire after moving to California.


Six Crowns

This filly was a star from the beginning, since she was by Triple Crown winner Secretariat out of Filly Triple Crown winner Chris Evert – hence the name Six Crowns. She won or placed in 13 of her 15 starts, almost all of them at age three in 1979. She got her stakes win in the Meadow Queen Stakes at The Meadowlands, and placed in six other stakes, including the G1 Ladies H. facing older fillies and mares. Six Crowns excelled as a broodmare, producing the G1 winners Chief’s Crown and Classic Crown. Chief’s Crown was the champion 2-year-old colt in 1984 and became a very good sire.


Subjective

Subjective, yet another stakes winner from Secretariat’s 1982 crop, loved the grass. She broke her maiden at Ayr Racecourse in Scotland, her only European victory in 10 starts before coming home to America for her 4-year-old season. Through age five, she started 21 more times in the U.S. Her victories included the Iris Stakes at Garden State Park and the Suffolk Downs Budweiser Breeders Cup, with placings in several other stakes races.


Summer Secretary

A foal of 1985, Summer Secretary was a tough mare who made 55 starts from age two to six. Primarily trained by H. Allen Jerkens, she broke her maiden in her first start at three after four unsuccessful efforts at two. She eventually won 11 races, including four stakes. A grass specialist, she won two editions of the G3 Beaugay at Belmont Park, at ages four and six, plus the Atlantic City Budweiser Breeders’ Cup and the Rumson Breeders’ Cup. As a broodmare, Summer Secretary produced the stakes winner Dayjob, who still holds the Prairie Meadows 5-furlong track record he set in 1999.



Summer Secretary

Swoon

Few horses test the patience of their owners as did Swoon, a 1978 foal. Plagued by injuries early in his career, with several long layoffs, he had his best year ever as a 7-year-old in 1985. A long-distance turf specialist, he became a stakes winner in the 1985 San Marino Handicap at 1½ miles. That year he competed well against horses half his age in several big races, with close thirds in the G1 San Juan Capistrano and G1 Hollywood Invitational. He had limited opportunity as a stallion, and sired four minor stakes winners.


Tiffany’s Secret

From the impressive bloodlines of Sam-Son Farm came Tiffany’s Secret, a 1987 filly out of Tiffany Tam. She broke her maiden in her third start at two, and then struggled a bit until the following summer. She put it all together at the right time, winning an allowance race at Woodbine followed by a win in the Canadian Oaks, Canada’s premier race for Canadian-bred fillies. After six months off, she never regained that winning form in eight more starts.


Viva Sec

A veteran campaigner with 35 starts through age six, Viva Sec specialized in dirt sprints. A foal of 1978, she was a runner from the start. She placed in her first two starts at three, then reeled off five straight wins at Belmont Park and Aqueduct. They included her first stakes win, Aqueduct’s Dark Mirage. Over the next two years, she recorded several allowance wins and close placings in stakes races. Viva Sec got a second stakes win in the 1983 Grey Flight at Aqueduct. In total, she won or placed in 26 of her 35 starts, and after poor efforts as a 6-year-old, she was ready to be a broodmare. She produced 15 foals, with six stakes-placed winners among them. Her daughters carried on her line with honor, with G1 winners Vicar and Itsmyluckyday among her many stakes-winning descendants.


As noted, these are just some of Secretariat's 62 stakes winners profiled in Secretariat’s Legacy, and the book has photos of most of the 62 (not just the 31 that I photographed personally; I acquired usage rights for photos of 25 more from photographers and racetracks around the world.).



For a photo gallery of these 17 stakes winners, click on the image of Pancho Villa below.




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