On This Day...
Photo: The Blood-Horse Library
Silver Spoon in the Santa Anita Derby
March 7, 1959
Silver Spoon in the Santa Anita Derby

Silver Spoon won for a claiming tag as a 2-year-old in her first start and didn't stop winning until the spring of her 3-year-old season.

Her mightiest win came in the March 7 Santa Anita Derby as the only filly in the race.

"I believe the colts that Silver Spoon defeated this afternoon are the equal if not just a little better than the ones in the East this year," said her breeder/owner, C.V. Whitney. "It seems that First Landing (in the East) has faded some. Silver Spoon has earned her chance at the (Kentucky) Derby, and she is going to get it."

Silver Spoon's Santa Anita Derby win came in time only a fifth of a second off the stakes record. The daughter of Citation became the first 3-year-old filly to win a $100,000-added event and only the second filly to win the Santa Anita Derby.

Silver Spoon met defeat in an allowance race against males at Churchill Downs April 25 in her next start. Whitney made good on his promise to start Silver Spoon in the Run for the Roses. A filly hadn't won the big race since Regret, owned by Whitney's father, H.P. Whitney, in 1915. Silver Spoon was the first filly starter in the Derby since 1945, but all she could do was finish fifth. She later won other major races and ended up in the Racing Hall of Fame.

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