1935 Triple Crown Winner Profile
Sire: Gallant Fox
Owner: Belair Stud Stable
Breeder: William Woodward, Sr.
Trainer: James “Sunny Jim” Fitzsimmons
Primary Jockey: William “Smokey” Saunders
Race record: 22 starts, 9 wins, 7 seconds, 2 thirds
As a son of Triple Crown champion Gallant Fox, Omaha was bred to excel in the spring classics. But only the most optimistic of horsemen could have predicted the chestnut colt would emulate his sire with a sweep of the 1935 Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes.
Like Gallant Fox, Omaha was trained by James “Sunny Jim” Fitzsimmons on behalf of William Woodward Sr., who bred and raced the colt under his Belair Stud banner. Produced by the Wrack mare Flambino, Omaha was slow to mature and compiled an unremarkable 1-for-9 record as a 2-year-old. But he showed consistency right from the start, hitting the board in every start while competing against tough company in historic juvenile tests like the Sanford, Hopeful, Champagne, and Futurity.
Stretching out in distance as a 3-year-old worked wonders for Omaha, who displayed rapid improvement with jockey William “Smokey” Saunders in the saddle. An allowance win at Jamaica and a closing third-place effort in the Wood Memorial served as Omaha’s preps for the Kentucky Derby, where he started as the 4-1 second choice in a large field. Reserved off the pace while racing wide, Omaha swept to the lead on the far turn and finished resolutely to claim a 1 1/2-length triumph.
Omaha was even more dominant in the Preakness one week later, launching a powerful bid to win by six lengths. With four weeks to wait until the Belmont Stakes, Omaha stayed sharp by cutting back in distance for the 1-mile Withers, where he failed by just 1 1/2 lengths to catch the talented Rosemont.
This setback didn’t scare away Belmont Stakes bettors, who favored Omaha at 7-10 to sweep the Triple Crown. Omaha promptly obliged with a late-rallying 1 1/2-length score, and over the next six weeks he added victories in the Dwyer and Arlington Classic to his decorated resume.
Though an injury sidelined Omaha during the middle of his sophomore season, as a 4-year-old he made history by becoming the only U.S. Triple Crown winner to compete outside North America. Sent to England to race under the care of trainer Cecil Boyd-Rochfort, Omaha won two of his four starts and was beaten just a nose in the historic 2 1/2-mile Ascot Gold Cup at Royal Ascot, proving he could hold his own against international competition on grass.
Omaha failed to match the success of his sire at stud and was eventually sent to Nebraska, where he made appearances at Ak-Sar-Ben racetrack until his death in 1959. He joined the Hall of Fame in 1966, and a monument in the city of Omaha, Nebraska honors his memory to this day.
Omaha Major Race Results
1 1/8 m
1 1/4 m
1 3/16 m
1 1/16 m
1 1/2 m
1 1/2 m
1 1/16 m