By Mint Julep

George Smith 1916 Kentucky Derby Winner

george smith 1916 kentucky derby winner

Step into the past at the famous 1916 Kentucky Derby, where George Smith, a remarkable Thoroughbred horse bred by Jack P. Chinn & Frederick A. Forsythe, made history with an exciting win at Churchill Downs. Experience the thrilling race day moments, notable absences of top competitors, and witness jockey Johnny Loftus’s exceptional horsemanship guided by expert trainer Hollie Hughes. Discover how George Smith’s triumph left a lasting impact on horse racing’s biggest stage, securing his place among the legends of this iconic sporting event forever.

George Smith’s Background and Early Career

George Smith, an impressive racehorse from Kentucky, was bred by Jack P. Chinn and Frederick A. Forsythe with great care. Their expertise in selecting top-quality horses set the stage for George Smith’s remarkable journey to success on the racetrack.

In May 1916, at Churchill Downs where excitement filled the air, jockey Johnny Loftus expertly guided George Smith through a field of tough rivals to win a prestigious Grade I stakes race. The sound of hooves pounding echoed like a determined symphony as they raced into history amidst loud cheers and applause that seemed to shake the ground.

Owned by John Sanford and trained by Hollie Hughes, George Smith not only won races but also became a symbol of determination and excellence in horse racing worldwide. His victory at the famous Kentucky Derby made him legendary among fellow racers, leaving an unforgettable impression on all who witnessed his incredible achievement firsthand.

As some key competitors were missing on that historic day, it was George Smith’s unwavering spirit and undeniable talent that stood out under Churchill Down’s iconic twin spires. His brilliance shone even brighter without their presence on this grand stage where dreams came true with every stride towards glory.

The legacy created by George Smith at Churchill Downs goes beyond time itself, becoming part of sporting history as proof of what can be accomplished through hard work and passion for one’s craft. Linked forever with honor within racing circles, his name is an inspiration for future generations – guiding those who seek their own version of Derby Day magic with hope and determination in their hearts.

Race Day at the 42nd Kentucky Derby

The 42nd Kentucky Derby took place at Churchill Downs on May 13, 1916, marking a significant moment in the history of horse racing. The atmosphere buzzed with excitement as crowds gathered to witness the thrilling event unfold. While some notable names were missing from the lineup, stars like Star Hawk and Franklin promised an exciting competition that kept everyone on edge.

George Smith, bred by Hal Price Headley, emerged as a surprising dark horse destined for greatness. Guided skillfully by jockey Johnny Loftus through the dirt track, their teamwork became a winning combination that captivated both hearts and minds alike. This race wasn’t just about speed; it was about finesse, strategy, and relentless determination shown by both rider and horse.

In an impressive time of 2:04.00, George Smith raced towards victory amidst cheers erupting from delighted spectators in celebration of his remarkable achievement. Each powerful stride he made seemed to resonate with the legacies of champions before him—a clear nod to the enduring magic of this prestigious competition. As he crossed the finish line first in that fleeting moment, George Smith etched his name into Kentucky Derby lore with unwavering certainty.

The success story behind George Smith’s triumph—bred by Headley and ridden by Loftus—represented a perfect blend of expertise and passion that epitomized this sport at its best. Their seamless collaboration highlighted how teamwork could overcome individual talent alone—a valuable lesson not lost on those who witnessed history unfold at Churchill Downs on that fateful day.

With each thunderous hoofbeat echoing like a drumroll heralding his ascent into horseracing legend status , George Smith left an unforgettable mark on the sport—one transcending mere numbers or awards received . His win resonated far beyond Churchill Downs’ revered grounds; it reverberated throughout time as proof that dreams can indeed materialize amid galloping hooves united under applause-filled skies full awe-inspiring wonderment

The Pros & Cons of Racing Legends


  1. Delves into the historic 1916 Kentucky Derby victory by George Smith, shedding light on its significance.

  2. Engages readers intrigued by horse racing history with compelling storytelling.

  3. Analyzes in depth the legendary win and how it influenced the sport at that time.

  4. Helps readers gain a deeper insight into George Smith's journey to triumph at the Derby.

  5. Paints a vivid picture through rich descriptions and imagery, making the story come alive.


  1. Readers who aren't into horse racing or historical events might not be as interested.

  2. The book mainly focuses on George Smith's Kentucky Derby win, leaving out many other parts of his life.

  3. Some readers could feel overwhelmed by the detailed analysis if they prefer lighter reads.

  4. The author may show bias by making George Smith's victory seem overly positive.

  5. Adding interactive elements or multimedia enhancements could help keep readers more engaged.

Victory and Payouts

The 1916 Kentucky Derby was an amazing event, especially because famous horses like Regret and Omar Khayyam were not part of the race, making it more unpredictable. The excitement soared as George Smith raced down the final stretch, leaving everyone in awe of his speed and endurance. In a memorable moment that would go down in horse racing history, George Smith crossed the finish line first, securing victory for owner John Sanford while spectators cheered loudly.

Breeder Harry Payne Whitney’s careful breeding program paid off with George Smith’s win at Churchill Downs. With a lineage tracing back to well-known sires such as Ben Brush and Domino, George Smith represented excellence on the racetrack. His exceptional performance not only displayed his talent but also showcased Whitney’s skill in producing top-notch Thoroughbreds. It was a proud moment for all involved in raising George Smith, demonstrating their commitment to nurturing champions destined for success.

The winning team reveled in glory as they celebrated George Smith’s impressive victory at the prestigious Kentucky Derby. Jockey Johnny Loftus expertly guided the talented colt through each stride with skill and finesse that left onlookers amazed. Trainer Hollie Hughes’ thorough preparation ensured that George Smith was ready for success on race day, emphasizing how teamwork is crucial in achieving great accomplishments within horse racing.

George Smith’s legacy echoed throughout horseracing circles long after his historic win at Churchill Downs. His name became synonymous with perseverance, determination, and unmatched skill—a source of inspiration for aspiring jockeys and breeders alike. The impact of his triumph continued across generations as proof of one unforgettable moment when he galloped into immortality at the 1916 Kentucky Derby—forever solidifying his place among equine sports legends.

Notable Absences and Scratches

The 1916 Kentucky Derby had a lineup of famous contenders, but some horses were unable to participate due to injuries or decisions from their owners. St. Isidore, Bulse, and Huffaker were among those scratched before the race.

On race day at Churchill Downs in Louisville, spectators eagerly awaited the start of the competition between the magnificent horses. The absence of certain favorites added excitement and mystery to an already thrilling event.

Despite these setbacks, the prestigious race was still a spectacle filled with grandeur. Each scratch only increased anticipation and highlighted the fierce competition among those left in contention.

While some may have been disappointed by familiar names missing from the roster, it showcased how unpredictable horse racing can be—a sport where anything is possible on any given day.

Looking back now, these scratches make George Smith’s remarkable victory at the 1916 Kentucky Derby even more impressive—an unforgettable moment in horseracing history that will always be remembered.

Thrilling Race Results: Top Performers Revealed!

Finished Post Horse Jockey Trainer Owner Time / behind
1st 8 George Smith Johnny Loftus Hollie Hughes John Sanford 2:04.00
2nd 3 Star Hawk Walter Lilley Walter B. Jennings A. Kingsley Macomber Neck
3rd 1 Franklin Ted Rice John S. Ward A. Weber & J. S. Ward 5
4th 4 Dodge Frank Murphy John S. Ward A. Weber & J. S. Ward 1/2
5th 5 Thunderer Thomas McTaggart James G. Rowe Sr. Harry Payne Whitney 6
6th 7 The Cock Mack Garner Walter B. Jennings A. Kingsley Macomber 1
7th 2 Dominant Joe Notter James G. Rowe Sr. Harry Payne Whitney 5
8th 9 Kinney Loyd Gentry Sr. Thomas P. Hayes Thomas P. Hayes 5
9th 6 Lena Misha Eddie Dugan George Zeigler Beverwyck Stable 12

Breeder Recognition and Winning Connections

In 1916, the Kentucky Derby saw George Smith crossing the finish line first, marking a significant moment for esteemed horse breeders Jack P. Chinn and Frederick A. Forsythe. This victory solidified their reputation as breeders with exceptional talent in spotting equine excellence.

The relationship between a breeder and their champion horse is built on patience, expertise, and unwavering dedication to fostering greatness. Chinn & Forsythe exemplified this bond with George Smith, nurturing his skills and potential until they shone brightly at Churchill Downs that fateful day.

In the world of Thoroughbred racing, winning connections like trainers, jockeys, and owners play crucial roles in shaping a horse’s path to victory. Each member of George Smith’s team contributed unique skills and passion towards propelling him to his memorable win at the 1916 Kentucky Derby.

Witnessing a racehorse like George Smith thunder down the track towards glory is an unparalleled experience filled with intensity and excitement. As he gracefully powered past competitors during that historic race day at Churchill Downs spectators were left in awe of his raw talent and determination to emerge victorious against all odds.

Chinn & Forsythe’s legacy as masterful breeders was forever cemented by George Smith’s triumph at the 1916 Kentucky Derby—a true testament to their vision, expertise, and love for these majestic animals that continue captivating hearts worldwide long after that iconic race concluded.

Historical Significance of George Smith’s Victory

In 1916, George Smith won the Kentucky Derby thanks to Trainer Hollie Hughes’s expert guidance. This victory not only showcased his talent but also highlighted Hughes’s dedication and skill in preparing him for the race.

Owner John Sanford demonstrated a commitment to excellence by entrusting talented horses like George Smith to professionals such as trainer Hollie Hughes. This dedication ensured optimal performance on the racetrack and solidified Sanford’s reputation among elite Thoroughbred racing circles.

Jockey Johnny Loftus showed remarkable riding mastery aboard George Smith during the 1916 Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. Loftus expertly guided George Smith to victory with precise timing and strategic maneuvers, leaving spectators in awe of their synchronized prowess on one of horse racing’s most prestigious stages.

George Smith’s win at the 1916 Kentucky Derby continues to captivate audiences with its tale of triumph against all odds. Alongside connections like jockey Johnny Loftus, George Smith remains immortalized within horseracing lore—a symbol of greatness achieved through sheer determination and unyielding spirit on thoroughbred racing’s grandest platform.

Legendary tales surround George Smith's Kentucky Derby win

  1. George Smith pulled off a stunning upset in 1916 when the underdog horse, with odds of 25-1, surprisingly won the prestigious Kentucky Derby with jockey Johnny Loftus in the saddle.

  2. Just before the big race, George Smith was sold to new owners amidst controversy and speculation about how this sudden change would affect his performance on Derby day.

  3. Following his historic victory at the Kentucky Derby, George Smith vanished from the racing scene mysteriously, sparking rumors and intrigue about what happened to him and why he disappeared so suddenly after claiming victory.

  4. Despite his brief time in racing circles, George Smith's legacy endures as one of the most unexpected and enigmatic winners in Kentucky Derby history, captivating fans even now with a story that remains intriguing and memorable.

  5. Over time, myths and legends have woven themselves around George Smith's triumph at the Kentucky Derby – enhancing its allure and magic while solidifying his place as a legendary figure within horse racing lore for generations to come.


1. Who was George Smith, and what made his victory at the 1916 Kentucky Derby so significant?

In 1916, George Smith made history by winning the Kentucky Derby, becoming a celebrated racehorse. This victory established his reputation as a symbol of skill and determination in the world of horseracing.

2. What notable absences or challenges did George Smith face during the 1916 Kentucky Derby?

In the 1916 Kentucky Derby, George Smith faced tough competition without any major stables due to World War I. Despite starting from a difficult post position, he managed to come out on top and win the race, securing his spot in horseracing history as a champion.

3. How did George Smith's breeder play a role in his success at the 1916 Kentucky Derby?

Hal Price Headley, the breeder of George Smith, played a crucial role in helping him win the 1916 Kentucky Derby. By carefully choosing and raising the talented colt, he set the scene for an unforgettable triumph that left its mark on horseracing history.

4. Can you share more about the winning connections behind George Smith's triumph at the 1916 Kentucky Derby?

In 1916, George Smith emerged victorious at the Kentucky Derby thanks to a powerhouse team consisting of owner Willis Sharpe Kilmer, trainer Hollie Hughes, and jockey Linus McAtee. Their collective skills and unwavering commitment propelled this iconic horse to triumph in one of the most esteemed races in American horse racing lore.

5. What enduring legacy did George Smith leave in the world of horseracing following his victory at the 1916 Kentucky Derby?

George Smith's win at the 1916 Kentucky Derby created a lasting impact in the horse racing community, establishing him as an emblem of success and perseverance for future generations.