Throughout the history of horse racing there have been horses that have stood out. In this case it corresponds to the unforgettable Cañonero II. Cañonero II gave a big surprise at the Kentucky Derby. In turn, this specimen was a horse born in Kentucky, North America, son of the notorious French stallion Pretendre.
Cañonero II (April 24, 1968 – November 11, 1981). This horse was a Venezuelan champion of pure blood. In effect, he will be remembered for winning the first two stages of the United States Triple Crown in 1971.
Cañonero II in Venezuelan territory
- Then the procedures for the entry of Cañonero II to Venezuela were organized. However, its sale in the country was not easy.
- It was acquired by Pedro Baptista, for the amount of US $ 4500, then passed into the hands of Juan Arias.
- When the sale of Cañonero II materialized, it contained reservations made to run the Del Mar Futurity and the three steps of the North American Triple Crown.
- Cañonero II debuted at the La Rinconada Racetrack on August 8, 1970.
- It ventured for the first time in the USA on September 5, when intervening in an Allowance appearing third to body and a half of King Cross and a week runs the Del Mar Futurity.
- Back in Venezuela, he remained unbeaten in his first three presentations before playing the Classic Governor of the Federal District.
- Then he keeps participating between the fourth and sixth series for successful imports to complete six wins in ten starts, with three third.
- Juan Arias and Pedro Baptista then plan the new getaway to USA, in order to try their luck in the Triple Crown events.
Races of the Triple Crown of Cañonero II
- He qualified for the Kentucky Derby, the most prestigious event in purebred horse racing in the United States. On this occasion the coach was Juan Arias and ridden by the jockey Gustavo Avila for the great race.
- In field of 20 horses of the Derby, Cañonero II surprised to all to the position 18 in the competition.
- It could be said that the most amazing event in the history of the race was considered a coincidence by many experts in horse racing. Well, those who predicted that Cañonero II would never win another race.
- In the Preakness Stakes, the second of the Triple Crown races won again.
- The third leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes was held before the largest crowd in its history. The stands were filled with members of the great Latino community of the city, to encourage their new hero. Achieving the goal in the fourth place.
- He was the winner of the 1971 Eclipse Award for the best three-year-old male horse.
Sold to the King Ranch, Cañonero II was nursed back to health by Hall of Fame trainer Buddy Hirsch. The following year in the Stymie Handicap at Belmont Park, he set a track record while defeating the great three-year-old champion Riva Ridge.
Retired to stud at the end of 1972, Cañonero II died in 1981.
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