|Grade I race|
|Location|| Belmont Park |
Elmont, New York, United States
|Inaugurated||1959 (as Man o' War Handicap at Aqueduct Racetrack)|
|Race type||Thoroughbred – Flat racing|
|Qualification||Four-year-olds and older|
|Weight||124 lbs with allowances|
|Purse||$700,000 (since 2018)|
The Man o' War Stakes is a Grade I American thoroughbred horse race for horses aged four-years-old and older run over a distance of one and three-eighth miles on the turf scheduled annually in early May at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. The current purse is $700,000.
The event is named in honor of U.S. Racing Hall of Fame Champion Man o' War who was selected as No. 1 in the Blood-Horse magazine List of the Top 100 U.S. Racehorses of the 20th Century.
The inaugural running of the event was on 24 October 1959 at the newly reopened Aqueduct Racetrack as the Man o' War Handicap over a distance of 1+1⁄2 miles. The event attracted 23 entrants thus enabling NYRA to run the event as two split divisions with a record total purse of $225,100. The event attracted some of the finest long distance turf horses including British bred Tudor Era who was first past the post in the 1958 Washington D.C. International at Laurel but was disqualified. Tudor Era would win the Second Division of the event as the favorite defeating Marlow Road by 3 lengths with Anisado in third place in a time of 2:41 flat. In 1960 the event was held at Belmont Park with the 37-1 Harmonizing defeating Bald Eagle and the 1959 U.S. Horse of the Year Sword Dancer. Bald Eagle would go on and win the Washington D.C. International and would be crowded U.S. Champion Older Male Horse.
The event was moved back Aqueduct in 1961 at a longer distance of one and five-eighths miles with handicap conditions. 1+1⁄2 miles in defeating a group of highly talented entrants, including 1961 U.S. Horse of the Year and last winner of the Jockey Club Gold Cup Kelso in second, former English based The Axe II in third, who would win this event the following year, Wise Ship in fourth, who won this event in 1961 and the 1961 Kentucky Derby winner Carry Back who finished fifth. Other starters included 1962 Belmont Stakes winner Jaipur, T.V. Lark, Honey Dear, Guadalcanal and the 1960 winner of this event Harmonizing.NYRA by scheduling the event in October established New York as a logical and natural place for international and top US turf runners to prepare for the Washington D.C. International which was considered as the forerunner to the Breeders' Cup Turf and the championship long distance turf race. The 1962 renewal of the event as the Man o' War Stakes at Belmont Park was run with Weight for Age conditions. The winner, 20-1 longshot Beau Purple who set a track record of 2:28.60 for the
The event was held at Aqueduct from 1963 to 1967 while Belmont Park was under reconstruction.On return to Belmont Park in 1968 a host of champions would win the event. In 1969 the South African bred Champion Three-year-old Hawaii would win the event and would be crowned U.S. Champion Turf Horse. The following year, in 1970 Fort Marcy would finally win the event after four tries including twice second (1967, 1968) and third to Hawaii in 1969. In 1970 Fort Marcy also won the Washington D.C. International for the second time and was crowned U.S. Horse of the Year. The 1971 winner Run the Gantlet was also victorious in the Washington D.C. International and was crowned U.S. Champion Turf Horse. In 1972 the event was won by the six year old mare Typecast and she would be crowned U.S. Champion Older Female Horse.
In 1973 the first year the classification system was enacted, the event was set with Grade I status. 1+1⁄2 miles. Nonetheless, Secretariat would win the event by 5 lengths as the 1/2 odds-on favorite setting a new track record of 2:244⁄5. Secretariat would be awarded U.S. Champion Turf Horse and U.S. Horse of the Year.The 1973 winner was the U.S. Triple Crown Champion, Secretariat. Secretariat was to have his first start on the grass and nine days after he was beaten in the Grade 1 Woodward Stakes over
In 1974 the event was won by the French based mare Dahlia who had earlier campaigned in England and France.Dahlia would win the Canadian International Stakes in her next start and would be crowned U.S. Champion Turf Horse.
In 1977 NYRA introduced the Turf Classic over the same distance of 1+1⁄2 miles that was held in November. The scheduling of the Man o' War Stakes would be affected in that NYRA would try and space out the time between the dates that the events were held in the fall. In 1978 the distance of the event was decreased by one furlong to the current distance of 1+3⁄8 miles. The event that year was won by the French bred Waya and would win the Turf Classic two weeks later. In 1979 Bowl Game was able complete the treble in capturing the Man o' War Stakes, Turf Classic and Washington D.C. International. Such a feat earned Bowl Game U.S. Champion Turf Horse honors for 1979.
With the introduction of the Breeders' Cup in 1984 with the Breeders' Cup Turf the Man o' War Stakes become a major preparatory event in the early fall.
Irish bred Theatrical won the event in October 1987 at Aqueduct after also winning the Turf Classic which was scheduled earlier in September and then went on to also win the Breeders' Cup Turf at Hollywood Park. Theatrical was crowned U.S. Champion Turf Horse for 1987. Other fine horses to have completed the Man o' War-Turf Classic double include 1988 winner Sunshine Forever, 1989 winner Yankee Affair and 1991 winner Solar Splendor who set a new stakes record of 2:12:01 as a 24-1 longshot on the inner turf track.Solar Splendor would repeat winning the event the following year on the main turf track this time setting a new course record of 2:12.45. In 1999 Val's Prince also completed the NYRA Turf double but failed to spark in the Breeders' Cup Turf finishing eleventh.
The 2005 winner Better Talk Now won the event setting a new stakes record in 2:11.65.Better Talk Now had won the Breeders' Cup Turf in 2004 at Lone Star Park.
In 2008 the Man o' War was moved from Belmont's fall schedule into its summer schedule, replacing the Bowling Green Handicap in an attempt to more fairly represent turf competition. Also that year the conditions of the event were changed from Weight for Age to stakes with allowances.
In 2014 the event was scheduled in May and the conditions of the event were changed so that three-year-olds would not be allowed to enter.
In 2017 the event was won by the five-year-old Irish bred mare Zhukova who started as the 9/10 odds-on favorite and set a new stakes winning margin by 6 lengths over Taghleeb in a small field of five starters in a time of 2:25.31 on a yielding track in rainy weather.Zhukova was the fifth mare to have had won the event after Dotted Line (1959), Typecast (1973), Dahlia (1974) and Waya (1978).
In 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, NYRA did not schedule the event in their updated and shortened spring-summer meeting.
Most wins by an owner:
Most wins by a jockey:
Most wins by a trainer:
|At Belmont Park –Man o' War Stakes|
|2021||Channel Cat||5||John R. Velazquez||Jack Sisterson||Calumet Farm||1+3⁄8 miles||2:13.34||$700,000||I|
|2020||Race not held|
|2019||Channel Maker||5||Joel Rosario||William I. Mott||Wachtel Stable, Gary Barber, R. A. Hill Stable & Reeves Thoroughbred Racing||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.43||$700,000||I|
|2018||Hi Happy (ARG)||5||Luis Saez||Todd A. Pletcher||Haras La Providencia||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.79||$700,000||I|
|2017||ƒ Zhukova (IRE)||5||John R. Velazquez||Dermot K. Weld||John D. Murrell||1+3⁄8 miles||2:25.31||$392,000||I|
|2016||Wake Forest (GER)||6||John R. Velazquez||Chad C. Brown||Michael Dubb, Sheep Pond Partners & Bethlehem Stables||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.94||$400,000||I|
|2015||Twilight Eclipse||6||Javier Castellano||Thomas Albertrani||West Point Thoroughbreds||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.44||$400,000||I|
|2014||Imagining||6||Joel Rosario||Claude R. McGaughey III||Phipps Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:17.22||$400,000||I|
|2013||Boisterous||6||John R. Velazquez||Claude R. McGaughey III||Phipps Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.11||$600,000||I|
|2012||Point of Entry||4||Jose Lezcano||Claude R. McGaughey III||Phipps Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:13.87||$600,000||I|
|2011||Cape Blanco (IRE)||4||Jamie P. Spencer||Aidan P. O'Brien||Derrick Smith, Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor & Mrs. Fitriani Hay||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.06||$600,000||I|
|2010||Gio Ponti||5||Ramon A. Dominguez||Christophe Clement||Castleton Lyons||1+3⁄8 miles||2:16.20||$600,000||I|
|2009||Gio Ponti||4||Ramon A. Dominguez||Christophe Clement||Castleton Lyons||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.56||$500,000||I|
|2008||Red Rocks (IRE)||5||Javier Castellano||Brian J. Meehan||J. Paul Reddam||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.60||$500,000||I|
|2007||Doctor Dino (FR)||5||Olivier Peslier||Richard D. Gibson||Javier Martinez Salmean||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.26||$500,000||I|
|2006||Cacique (IRE)||5||Edgar S. Prado||Robert J. Frankel||Juddmonte Farms||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.68||$500,000||I|
|2005||§ Better Talk Now||6||Ramon A. Dominguez||H. Graham Motion||Bushwood Stables||1+3⁄8 miles||2:11.65||$500,000||I|
|2004||Magistretti||4||Edgar S. Prado||Patrick L. Biancone||Michael B. Tabor||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.65||$500,000||I|
|2003||Lunar Sovereign||4||Richard Migliore||Kiaran P. McLaughlin||Darley Racing||1+3⁄8 miles||2:17.99||$500,000||I|
|2002||With Anticipation||7||Pat Day||Jonathan E. Sheppard||Augustin Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.05||$500,000||I|
|2001||With Anticipation||6||Pat Day||Jonathan E. Sheppard||Augustin Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.11||$500,000||I|
|2000||Fantastic Light||4||Jerry D. Bailey||Saeed bin Suroor||Godolphin Racing||1+3⁄8 miles||2:17.44||$500,000||I|
|1999||Val's Prince||7||Jorge F. Chavez||H. James Bond||Robin Martin & Steve Weiner||1+3⁄8 miles||2:16.69||$500,000||I|
|1998||Daylami (IRE)||4||Jerry D. Bailey||Saeed bin Suroor||Godolphin Racing||1+3⁄8 miles||2:13.18||$400,000||I|
|1997||Influent||6||Jerry D. Bailey||Howard M. Tesher||Turfnpaddock Farm||1+3⁄8 miles||2:11.69||$400,000||I|
|1996||Diplomatic Jet||4||Jorge F. Chavez||James E. Picou||Fred W. Hooper||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.20||$400,000||I|
|1995||Millkom (GB)||6||Gary L. Stevens||Jean-Claude Rouget||Gary A. Tanaka||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.80||$400,000||I|
|1994||Royal Mountain Inn||5||Julie Krone||Barclay Tagg||Steadfast Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:11.75||$400,000||I|
|1993||Star of Cozzene||5||Jose A. Santos||Mark A. Hennig||Team Valor||1+3⁄8 miles||2:23.14||$400,000||I|
|1992||Solar Splendor||5||Herb McCauley||Patrick J. Kelly||Live Oak Plantation||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.45||$400,000||I|
|1991||Solar Splendor||4||Herb McCauley||Patrick J. Kelly||Live Oak Plantation||1+3⁄8 miles||2:12.01||$400,000||I|
|1990||Defensive Play||3||Pat Eddery||Guy Harwood||Juddmonte Farms||1+3⁄8 miles||2:17.80||$473,600||I|
|1989||Yankee Affair||7||Jose A. Santos||Henry L. Carroll||Ju Ju Gen Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:20.80||$470,400||I|
|1988||Sunshine Forever||3||Ángel Cordero Jr.||John M. Veitch||Darby Dan Farm||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.40||$596,000||I|
|1987||Theatrical (IRE)||5||Pat Day||William I. Mott||Bertram R. Firestone||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.40||$585,000||I|
|At Belmont Park|
|1986||Dance of Life||3||Pat Day||MacKenzie Miller||Rokeby Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.40||$290,000||I|
|1985||Win||5||Richard Migliore||Sally A. Bailie||Frederick Ephraim||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.40||$306,000||I|
|1984||Majesty's Prince||5||Vincent Bracciale Jr.||Joseph B. Cantey||John D. Marsh||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.60||$312,000||I|
|1983||Majesty's Prince||4||Eddie Maple||Joseph B. Cantey||John D. Marsh||1+3⁄8 miles||2:23.60||$294,500||I|
|1982||Naskra's Breeze||5||Jean-Luc Samyn||Philip G. Johnson||Broadmoor Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:13.00||$173,000||I|
|1981||Galaxy Libra (IRE)||5||Bill Shoemaker||Charles E. Whittingham||Louis R. Rowan||1+3⁄8 miles||2:14.80||$165,300||I|
|1980||French Colonial||5||Jacinto Vasquez||David A. Whiteley||Lazy F Ranch||1+3⁄8 miles||2:15.40||$140,100||I|
|1979||Bowl Game||5||Jorge Velásquez||John M. Gaver Jr.||Greentree Stable||1+3⁄8 miles||2:19.00||$137,375||I|
|1978||ƒ Waya (FR)||4||Ángel Cordero Jr.||Angel Penna Sr.||Daniel Wildenstein||1+3⁄8 miles||2:16.20||$132,875||I|
|1977||Majestic Light||4||Sandy Hawley||John W. Russell||Ogden Mills Phipps||1+1⁄2 miles||2:27.60||$113,100||I|
|1976||Effervescing||3||Ángel Cordero Jr.||John W. Russell||Ogden Phipps||1+1⁄2 miles||2:31.20||$112,500||I|
|1975||† Snow Knight (GB)||4||Jorge Velásquez||MacKenzie Miller||Windfields Farm||1+1⁄2 miles||2:29.20||$114,000||I|
|1974||ƒ Dahlia||4||Ron Turcotte||Maurice Zilber||Nelson Bunker Hunt||1+1⁄2 miles||2:26.60||$119,500||I|
|1973||Secretariat||3||Ron Turcotte||Lucien Laurin||Meadow Stable||1+1⁄2 miles||2:24.80||$113,600||I|
|1972||ƒ Typecast||6||Ángel Cordero Jr.||A. Thomas Doyle||Westerly Stud Farms||1+1⁄2 miles||2:31.80||$117,300|
|1971||Run the Gantlet||3||Robert Woodhouse||J. Elliott Burch||Rokeby Stable||1+1⁄2 miles||2:33.20||$112,000|
|1970||Fort Marcy||6||Jorge Velásquez||J. Elliott Burch||Rokeby Stable||1+1⁄2 miles||2:33.80||$116,100|
|1969||Hawaii (SAF)||5||Jorge Velásquez||MacKenzie Miller||Cragwood Stables||1+1⁄2 miles||2:27.20||$113,300|
|1968||Czar Alexander (GB)||3||Jorge Velásquez||Angel Penna Sr.||Gustave Ring||1+1⁄2 miles||2:30.80||$116,200|
|1967||Ruffled Feathers||3||David Hidalgo||John A. Nerud||Tartan Stable||1+5⁄8 miles||2:42.80||$116,100|
|1966||Assagai||3||Larry Adams||MacKenzie Miller||Cragwood Stable||1+5⁄8 miles||2:44.60||$112,100|
|1965||Hill Rise||4||Manuel Ycaza||William B. Finnegan||El Peco Ranch||1+5⁄8 miles||2:42.60||$112,700|
|1964||Turbo Jet II (IRE)||4||Howard Grant||Frank A. Bonsal||Barclay Stable||1+5⁄8 miles||2:42.80||$111,800|
|1963||The Axe II||5||John L. Rotz||John M. Gaver, Sr.||Greentree Stable||1+5⁄8 miles||2:45.60||$113,700|
|At Belmont Park|
|1962||Beau Purple||5||William Boland||H. Allen Jerkens||Hobeau Farm||1+1⁄2 miles||2:28.60||$114,800|
|At Aqueduct –Man o' War Handicap|
|1961||Wise Ship||4||Heliodoro Gustines||Jacob Byer||Milton J. Ritzenberg||1+5⁄8 miles||2:50.40||$100,000|
|At Belmont Park –Man o' War Stakes|
|1960||Harmonizing||6||John Ruane||Everett W. King||Sadie L. King||1+1⁄2 miles||2:33.20||$110,200|
|At Aqueduct –Man o' War Handicap|
|1959||ƒ Dotted Line||6||William Boland||Max Hirsch||King Ranch||1+1⁄2 miles||2:40.80||$112,050||Division 1|
|Tudor Era (GB)||6||Bill Hartack||Arnold N. Winick||Minnie G. Herff||2:41.00||$113,050||Division 2|
§ Ran as an entry
ƒ Filly or Mare
† In the 1975 running of the event One On The Aisle was first past the post but was disqualified for interference in the straight and was placed second. Snow Knight was declared the official winner of the event.
Cigar, was an American Thoroughbred racehorse. Originally campaigned on turf tracks he showed useful but unremarkable form, but he emerged as an outstanding performer when switched to racing on dirt in 1995. In 1996, he became the first American racehorse racing against top-class competition to win 16 consecutive races since Triple Crown winner Citation did so between 1948 and 1950. Cigar retired as the leading money earner in Thoroughbred racing history and was later inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. After his retirement from racing he stood as a breeding stallion but proved to be infertile and was quickly retired from stud duties. He nevertheless enjoyed a long retirement at Kentucky Horse Park before dying at the age of 24.
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