Top 5 Desert Island Races: #1 Smarty Jones

Yes, it’s technically Birdstone’s Belmont Stakes in 2004, but this day —  in defeat — belongs to the people’s champion.  Smarty Jones — hailing from what was then Philly-park — was undefeated, had rather easily won the first two legs on the Triple Crown, and captured the public imagination in a way not seen in decades.

When he turned for home under Stewart Elliot’s premature move, he appeared to be pulling away and the question — for at least a second — was “how much?”  But, then announcer Tom Durkin noted that  Birdstone was commencing a rally, and it became a race against the tiring stretch of the mile and a half and, of course, history.