? When was the Wood Memorial first run?
•The inaugural meeting was held in 1925 at Jamaica Race Course (N.Y.), where the stakes was run until 1960, when Jamaica was torn down and the Wood went to Aqueduct. The race was named for Eugene D. Wood, a Jamaica founder. It quickly became a prime test for Kentucky Derby hopefuls.
? Who won the first race?
•H. P. Whitney's Back bone covered the mile and 70 yards in 1:43 2/5 (the present distance is 1 1/8 miles). He was only 14th in the Derby but finished second in the Preakness.
April 13, 1964
? How many winners of the Wood went on to take the Derby?
•Six—Gallant Fox (1930), Twenty Grand (1931), Johnstown (1939), Count Fleet (1943), Hoop, Jr. (1945) and Assault (1946).
? Three horses who won the Wood also earned the Triple Crown. Who were they?
•Gallant Fox, Count Fleet and Assault.
? How many Wood champions took two legs of the crown?
•Four. Twenty Grand and Johnstown won the Belmont after their Derby victories, while Native Dancer (1953) and Nashua (1955) both took the Preakness and Belmont.
? Who rode the most winners?
•Eddie Arcaro had nine winning mounts. His first was Stir Up in one of the 1944 divisions (the race was split into two heats three times—1944, 1945 and 1947), and the others were Hoop. Jr. (1945), Phalanx and I Will (1947), Olympia (1949), Hill Prince (1950), Head Man (1956), Bold Ruler (1957) and Jewel's Reward (1958).
? Who holds the record for trainers?
•Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons retired in 1963 with eight winners—four each for Belair Stud and Wheatley Stable.
? It has been 17 years since a Wood winner won the Derby. Has any Wood entry made a good showing in recent years?
•Katherine Price's Carry Back won the 1961 Derby after finishing second to Globemaster in the Wood. He also took the Preakness.