First run during the final full year of the Civil War, the Travers Stakes is held annually at the Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., and the event has produced many of the top horses in the nation’s history. Outside of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes, the Travers Stakes is the largest event that is not part of the big three, and only one horse has won the “superfecta” by winning the Travers Stakes, Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes, which the legendary Whirlaway accomplished in 1941. Also known as the “Mid-Summer Derby,” the Travers Stakes is the nation’s oldest stakes race for thoroughbreds and gained instant notoriety as a top event due to its focus on running only the most exceptional three-year-old thoroughbreds in the United States. The stakes are named after W. R. Travers, whose horse, Kentucky, won the inaugural race in 1964. August Belmont is another famed stable owner whose horses won some of the early events.
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