The Blood-Horse Library

On This Day...

April 12, 1948
Citation Loses to Saggy

It was bad enough Citation lost the April 12 Chesapeake Trial Stakes at Harve de Grace in Maryland. What made it worse was that the winner was named Saggy.

Citation went off the heavy favorite against five rivals. "As usual, Citation broke well, and easily could have taken the lead over the "muddy" track," wrote Pohla Smith in Citation . "Instead Arcaro reined him back to fourth, apparently in an effort to see just how much horse he had under him. The answer was plenty but not enough to withstand what (trainer) Jimmy Jones still swears was a nasty trick by jockey Carson Kirk on Hefty and a racing judge named George Brown.

"Rounding the turn for home, Arcaro urged Citation to go after the leaders, and the colt quickly ate up the distance between them, But just when it seemed he would pass both Saggy and Hefty, Hefty began drifting out. He carried Citation almost to the outer rail before Arcaro got loose and, hand-riding hard, set out after Saggy again. Citation missed by a length."

Jones faulted Arcaro for taking Citation back too far, and also saved some of his wrath for Brown, who had found nothing objectionable in Kirk's ride.

Citation started twice more in April, winning the Chesapeake Stakes and Derby Trial at Churchill Downs, before sweeping the Triple Crown.

Click here to read more about this Thoroughbred Legend in Citation -- available now from