Arlington Classic

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Arlington Classic Stakes
Grade III race
Location Arlington Park
Arlington Heights, Illinois, United States
Inaugurated 1929 as Classic Stakes
Race type Thoroughbred - Flat racing
Website Arlington Park
Race information
Distance 1 116 miles
Surface Turf
Track Left-handed
Qualification Three-year-olds
Weight Scale Weight
Purse $100,000

The Arlington Classic Stakes is a Grade III American Thoroughbred horse race for three year old horses over a distance of ​1 116 miles on the turf held annually in late May at Arlington Park race track near Chicago, Illinois.


The event was inaugurated in 1929 as the Classic Stakes over a distance of ​1 14 miles on the dirt.[1]

At one time the Arlington Classic was one of the most important races in the United States, drawing the best 3-year-olds in the country. Triple Crown winner Gallant Fox attracted a crowd of 60,000 in 1930 and he continued his six race winning streak in the event.[2] In 1932 when Gusto, a grandson of the great Man o' War won, it was then the richest race for 3-year-olds in America with a purse of $88,100.[3] A noteworthy upset in the Arlington Classic occurred in 1946 when Assault, who had just won the United States Triple Crown, finished last.[4]

The Arlington Classic was run at the now defunct Washington Park Racetrack from 1943 through 1945. It was known as the Grand Prix Stakes in 1971, 1972 and 1973 and in 1977 it was made open to horses three-year-olds and up as was labelled as the Arlington Classic Invitational Handicap. There was no race held in 1974, 1975, 1976, 1988, 1998 and 1999.

The Arlington Classic became part of Arlington Park's "Mid-America Triple" which included the American Derby in July and the Secretariat Stakes in August. The Triple was last won by Honor Glide in 1997.

The event held a Grade I classification between 1981 and 1989.[5]

In 2007, this Grade III stakes race was downgraded to an ungraded stakes by the American Graded Stakes Committee, but it has been returned to its Grade III status.[5]

The Arlington Classic was raced on dirt from 1929–1973, 1977–1987, 1989-1993. [5]


Since its inception, the Arlington Classic has been contested over a variety of distances:[1]

  • 1929–1951 - ​1 14 miles (dirt)
  • 1952–1972 - 1 mile (dirt)
  • 1973 - ​1 116 miles (dirt)
  • 1977–1979 - ​1 14 miles (dirt)
  • 1980–1993 - ​1 18 miles (dirt)
  • 1994–2001 - ​1 18 miles (turf)
  • 2001 onwards - ​1 116 miles (turf)


Speed record: (at current ​1 116 miles distance)

Largest margin of victory:

Most wins by an owner:

Most wins by a jockey:

Most wins by a trainer:

Winners of the Arlington Classic[edit]

Arlington Classic Stakes
2018 Ezmosh Jose Valdivia, Jr. Brad Cox Madaket Stables, Zayat Stables, Ten Strike Racing 1:45.52 $100,000 III
2017 Cowboy Culture Shaun Bridgmohan Brad Cox Head of Plains Partners/Cheyenne Stables 1:46.81 $100,000 III
2016 Surgical Strike James Graham Ben Colebrook Seltzer/Anderson 1:47.51 $100,000 III
2015 Race not held
2014 Istanford James Graham Michael Stidham Thrash/Alley 1:43.60 $150,000 III
2013 General Election Joseph Rocco, Jr. Kellyn Gorder WinStar Farm 1:45.48 $150,000 III
2012 Silver Max Shaun Bridgmohan Dale Romans Bacon/Wells 1:41.87 $125,000 Listed
2011 Willcox Inn Robby Albarado Michael Stidham All In Stable 1:49.51 $100,000 Listed
2010 Workin for Hops Robby Albarado Michael Stidham Estrorace LLC 1:45.43 $100,000 Listed
2009 Giant Oak Eusebio Razo, Jr. Chris M. Block Virginia H. Tarra Trust 1:43.59 $150,000 Listed
2008 Meal Penalty Jose Velez, Jr. Todd Pletcher Sassafras Racing/Gulf Coast Farms 1:41.97 $150,000 Listed
2007 Pleasant Strike Rene Douglas Todd A. Pletcher Edward P. Evans 1:42.05 $150,000 III
2006 Kingship Robby Albarado Ronny Werner Oxbow Racing 1:43.57 $150,000 III
2005 Purim Mark Guidry Thomas F. Proctor Edward J. Sukley 1:42.65 $150,000 III
2004 Toasted Rene Douglas Laura de Seroux Sidney L. Port 1:50.91 $200,000 II
2003 Lismore Knight Rene Douglas Todd A. Pletcher J. J. Pletcher & B. Simon 1:42.73 $175,000 II
2002 Mr. Mellon Rene Douglas W. Elliott Walden WinStar Farm/T. Van Meter II 1:41.95 $175,000 II
2001 Baptize Mark Guidry William I. Mott G. & M. West 1:48.80 $200,000 II
2000 King Cugat Robby Albarado William I. Mott Centennial Farms 1:48.16 $150,000 II
1998–99 Race not held
1997 Honor Glide Garrett Gomez Jim Day Robert Schaedle III 1:47.59 $125,000 II
1996 Trail City Pat Day William I. Mott W. I. Mott & R. Verchota 1:48.61 $200,000 II
1995 Hawk Attack Pat Day W. Elliott Walden Cavalier Stable 1:48.04 $200,000 II
1994 Eagle Eyed Corey Nakatani Robert J. Frankel Juddmonte Farms 1:48.46 $300,000 II
1993 Boundlessly Pat Day Jere R. Smith, Jr. Panic Stable 1:49.89 $300,000 II
1992 Saint Ballado Julie Krone Clint Goodrich Lothenbach/Herold/Goodrich 1:46.82 $300,000 II
1991 Whadjathink Jorge Velasquez Michael Whittingham Richard L. Duchossois 1:49.18 $300,000 II
Arlington Classic
1990 Sound Of Cannons Pat Day George R. Arnold II B. Wilkinson/L.G. Robey 1:47.60 $250,000 II
1989 Clever Trevor Don Pettinger Donnie K. Von Hemel D. C. McNeil 1:49.40 $200,000 I
1988 Race not held
1987 Lost Code Gene St. Leon L. William Donovan Wendover Stable 1:49.60 $150,000 I
1986 Sumptious Randy Romero Phil Hauswald John A. Bell III 1:49.40 $100,000 I
1985 Smile Jacinto Vasquez Frank Gomez Frances A. Genter 1:51.20 $150,000 I
1984 At The Threshold Pat Day Lynn S. Whiting W. Cal Partee 1:50.20 $100,000 I
1983 Play Fellow Pat Day Harvey L. Vanier Vanier, Lauer, Victor 1:49.00 $100,000 I
1982 Wolfie's Rascal Angel Cordero, Jr. Howard Tesher Sidney L. Port et al. 1:49.00 $125,000 I
1981 Fairway Phantom John L. Lively Carl Nafzger William H. Floyd 1:53.40 $125,000 I
1980 Spruce Needles Mike Morgan Smiley Adams Golden Chance Farm 1:49.20 $125,000 II
1979 Steady Growth Brian Swatuk John J. Tammaro, Jr. Kinghaven Farm 2:00.60 $100,000 II
1978 Alydar Jeffrey Fell John M. Veitch Calumet Farm 2:00.40 $100,000 II
Arlington Classic Handicap
1977 Private Thoughts Ramon Perez Greg Sanders Sandera Farm 1:59.40 $150,000 Listed
1974–76 Race not held
Grand Prix Stakes
1973 Linda's Chief Braulio Baeza Al Scotti Neil Hellman 1:44.60 III
1972 King's Bishop Eddie Maple Thomas J. Kelly Craig F. Cullinan, Jr. 1:35.00
1971 Son Ange Chuck Baltazar Reggie Cornell Calumet Farm 1:36.00
Arlington Classic
1970 Corn Off The Cob Eddie Belmonte Arnold N. Winick Fence Post Farm 1:35.40
1969 Ack Ack Braulio Baeza Frank A. Bonsal Cain Hoy Stable 1:34.40
1968 Exclusive Native Ismael Valenzuela Ivan H. Parke Harbor View Farm 1:36.00
1967 Dr. Fager Braulio Baeza John A. Nerud Tartan Stable 1:36.00
1966 Buckpasser Braulio Baeza Edward A. Neloy Ogden Phipps 1:32.60
1965 Tom Rolfe Bill Shoemaker Frank Y. Whiteley, Jr. Powhatan Stables 1:34.80
1964 Tosmah Sam Boulmetis, Sr. Joseph Mergler Anthony Imbesi 1:36.20
1963 Candy Spots Bill Shoemaker Mesh Tenney Rex C. Ellsworth 1:35.80
1962 Ridan Avelino Gomez LeRoy Jolley J. G. W. Stable 1:38.00
1961 Globemaster John L. Rotz Thomas J. Kelly Leonard P. Sasso 1:35.40
1960 T. V. Lark Johnny Sellers Paul K. Parker C. R. Mac Stable 1:36.20
1959 Dunce Lois C. Cook Moody Jolley Claiborne Farm 1:35.00
1958 A Dragon Killer John Combest N. Haymaker Mrs. S. Sadacca 1:36.40
1957 Clem Conn McCreary William W. Stephens Adele L. Rand 1:36.60
1956 Swoon's Son David Erb Lex Wilson E. G. Drake 1:36.80
1955 Nashua Eddie Arcaro James E. Fitzsimmons Belair Stud 1:35.20
1954 Errard King Sam Boulmetis, Sr. Thomas J. Barry Joseph Gavegnano 1:35.00
1953 Native Dancer Eric Guerin William C. Winfrey Alfred G. Vanderbilt II 1:38.00
1952 Mark-Ye-Well Eddie Arcaro Ben A. Jones Calumet Farm 1:39.20
1951 Hall Of Fame Ted Atkinson John M. Gaver, Sr. Greentree Stable 2:03.20
1950 Greek Song Ovie Scurlock Virgil W. Raines Brandywine Stable 2:01.80
1949 Ponder Steve Brooks Horace A. Jones Calumet Farm 2:03.20
1948 Papa Redbird Robert L. Baird J. M. Goode J. A. Goodwin 2:03.00
1947 But Why Not Warren Mehrtens Max Hirsch King Ranch 2:01.80
1946 The Dude Melvin Duhon Al Gaal Mrs. Al Gaal 2:02.60
†1945 Pot O'Luck Douglas Dodson Ben A. Jones Calumet Farm 2:05.80
†1944 Twilight Tear Leon Haas Ben A. Jones Calumet Farm 2:03.60
†1943 Slide Rule Ferrill Zufelt Cecil Wilhelm William E. Boeing 2:04.60
1942 Shut Out Eddie Arcaro John M. Gaver, Sr. Greentree Stable 2:01.40
1941 Attention Carroll Bierman Max Hirsch Mrs. Parker Corning 2:02.80
1940 Sirocco George Woolf James W. Smith Dixiana Farm 2:03.00
1939 Challedon Harry Richards Louis J. Schaefer William L. Brann 2:02.00
1938 Nedayr Wayne D. Wright William A. Crawford Willis Sharpe Kilmer 2:06.20
1937 Flying Scot John Gilbert James W. Healy John Hay Whitney 2:05.80
1936 Granville James Stout James E. Fitzsimmons Belair Stud 2:03.20
1935 Omaha Wayne D. Wright James E. Fitzsimmons Belair Stud 2:01.40
1934 Cavalcade Mack Garner Robert A. Smith Brookmeade Stable 2:02.80
1933 Inlander Robert Jones Robert A. Smith Brookmeade Stable 2:02.00
1932 Gusto Silvio Coucci Max Hirsch Morton L. Schwartz 2:03.60 $88,100
1931 Mate Alfred Robertson James W. Healy Albert C. Bostwick, Jr. 2:02.40
1930 Gallant Fox Earl Sande James E. Fitzsimmons Belair Stud 2:03.80 $78,750[2]
Classic Stakes
1929 Blue Larkspur Mack Garner Herbert J. Thompson Edward R. Bradley 2:14.40

  Turf   Dirt   Idle   Race name
¶ Filly
† Held at Washington Park Race Track


  1. ^ a b "ARLINGTON CLASSIC STAKES - ARLINGTON PARK, IL UNITED STATES - Grade III". Thoroughbred Pedigree Online. 2017. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  2. ^ a b "A Look Back at Gallant Fox's Arlington Classic (excerpts from original article)". Blood-Horse. 19 July 1930. Retrieved 25 May 2017. 
  3. ^ "Sport: Who Won, Jul. 25, 1932". Time. 25 July 1932. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  4. ^ Conway, Terry (20 April 2016). "Assault: Against All Odds". The Sport. Retrieved 23 May 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c "Arlington Classic Stakes (Gr. 3)". equibase. 2017. Retrieved 23 May 2017.