Biography of Famous Horses and Jockeys: Exterminator and Albert Johnson

Abou the famous award winning horse Exterminator and his jockey Albert Johnson, history and biography.


Jockey--Albert Johnson

Exterminator's skin clung tight to a gangly frame, and his ribs stuck out. He was nick-named "Slim" and "Old Bones." His career started as companion to the top horse in his stable, Sun Briar. When Sun Briar was scratched, Exterminator became an after-thought entry in the 1918 Derby. Going off as a 30-1 longshot, Exterminator won running away. The awkward looking chestnut gelding went on to win a U.S. record of 34 stakes.

Nothing fazed Exterminator. His 100 starts between 1918 and 1923 saw him travel from Mexico to Canada and back again. He had 10 different trainers and won for all of them. He ran all distances in any kind of weather and under almost unbelievable handicaps. Thirty-five times he carried over 130 lbs., several times as much as 140. Exterminator ran in the money 84 times, with an even 50 victories. He won the Pimlico Cup 3 times in a row and so dominated the Saratoga Cup, winning it 4 times, that in 1921 no one would enter against him. It was one of only 16 walk-overs in modern U.S. racing history.

Albert Johnson was just coming into his own in the early 1920s. In 1922, atop Morrich, he took the Derby, and repeated in 1926 on Bubbling Over. He also recorded back-to-back wins in the Belmont, in 1925 on American Flag, and 1926 on Crusader.

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