When legendary gelding John Henry was finally retired in 1986 after amassing a career record of 83-39-15-9 and earnings of $6,591,860, he was the richest North American-based racehorse of all time.
The then 11-year-old won the inaugural Arlington Million (GIT) in 1981, also known as the “Miracle Million” thanks to the fire that devastated Arlington Park just days before, and took home the trophy in just about every top American turf race — and several dirt races — across the country. The plain brown gelding, who was conditioned for most of his career by Hall of Fame trainer Ron McAnally, spent his retirement years at the Kentucky Horse Park’s Hall of Champions outside Lexington until his death 10 years ago at age 32.
He was inducted into racing’s Hall of Fame in 1990.
Longtime Kentucky horseman Wes Lanter was lucky enough to spend… (more)