Alfred II
American racehorse owner and breeder
Alfred II
Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt, Jr. was a member of the prominent Vanderbilt family, a son of the first Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt, who died a hero in the sinking of the RMS Lusitania. His mother, Margaret Emerson (daughter of the Bromo-Seltzer inventor Isaac E Emerson), was one of America's wealthiest women and most sought-after hostesses, operating at least seven large estates around the country.
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  • 1999
    Age 86
    He died November 12, 1999 at his home in Mill Neck, New York after attending the morning racehorse workouts.
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  • 1971
    Age 58
    Alfred G. Vanderbilt continued racing throughout his life and served as Chairman of the Board of the New York Racing Association from 1971 to 1975.
    More Details Hide Details The New York Turf Writers voted him "The Man Who Did The Most for Racing," a record four times, posthumously renaming the award in his honor. In the early 1950s, he was a regular panelist on the NBC game show, Who Said That?, along with H. V. Kaltenborn, Boris Karloff, and the American actress Dagmar.
  • 1953
    Age 40
    All told, he won 21 of 22 starts, with the single second-place finish in the 1953 Kentucky Derby his only career loss.
    More Details Hide Details Many consider the Grey Ghost of Sagamore to have been the first Thoroughbred television star and TV Guide ranked him as a top icon of the era".
  • 1952
    Age 39
    He returned to racing with characteristic zeal, bringing his greatest champion, Native Dancer, to the track in 1952.
    More Details Hide Details The "Grey Ghost" won all 9 starts as a 2-year-old and was named Horse of the Year. He won every start as a three-year-old too, except the Kentucky Derby, which he lost by a head to Cain Hoy Stable's Dark Star and was named 3 year old Male Champion. The Dancer was Horse of the Year again in his 4th year.
  • 1938
    Age 25
    During the late 1930s and early 1940s, he owned and ran Pimlico Racetrack outside Baltimore, and arranged the famous match race between Seabiscuit and War Admiral in 1938.
    More Details Hide Details He was President of Belmont Park and Pimlico at the same time before joining the Navy. During the Second World War, he captained a PT boat in the South Pacific and was awarded The Silver Star for bravery under fire.
  • 1935
    Age 22
    Vanderbilt was elected to The Jockey Club as the youngest member in its history in 1935 and eventually campaigned four Eclipse Award champions: Discovery, Next Move, Bed O' Roses and the Native Dancer.
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  • 1922
    Age 9
    His mother, Margaret Emerson, took him to his first race, the Preakness Stakes, in 1922.
    More Details Hide Details He often said, "After that, I was hooked." On his 21st birthday, his Mother gave him Sagamore Farm, her racing operation in Glyndon, Maryland. In the early years Vanderbilt often slept in the barns, overseeing the breeding and training of his stable. He was President of Pimlico twice, the first time when he was just 20. As a stable owner his first major acquisition was Discovery, one of the great handicap horses of the age who became his foundation sire.
  • 1912
    Born on September 22, 1912.
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