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YouTube Gold: Man O’ War vs. Secretariat

The battle of the super horses!

Man o’ War
 UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Horse Racing: Clarence Kummer aboard Man o’ War at Belmont Park, Elmont, NY 1/1/1919—12/31/1920
SetNumber: D82960

On Saturday, Mage overcame 15-1 odds to win the Kentucky Derby. When he finished, his jockey, Javier Castellano, called him “a little horse with a big heart.”

He is a little horse, but small horses have been big winners. Think Seabiscuit.

Big horses tend to have more staying power though, especially in longer races, and two of the biggest horses to dominate racing were Man O’War and Secretariat. And this video asks: in a head-to-head, who would win?

It’s a great time waster of a question. Man O’War was probably bigger and apparently had a significantly longer stride. He also won 20 out of 21 career races and that’s hard to argue with. But if anyone can, it’s Big Red.

Secretariat’s record is not as gaudy: he finished his career 16-3-1. But he won the Triple Crown and his performance in the Belmont Stakes was freakish. No one could believe it.

When he died in 1989 though, an autopsy revealed what made Secretariat so unique: his heart was vastly larger than the normal horse’s heart.

So we’d say that overall, you'd have to favor Secretariat. He would have a chance in any shorter race with Man O’War obviously - he’s faster in every measure in this video - but in a longer race? That horse was essentially unbeatable.