Online voting is now open for the 10th annual winner of the Secretariat “Vox Populi” Horse of 2019. Created by Secretariat’s late owner Penny Chenery, the Vox Populi, or “Voice of the People,” award recognizes the racehorse whose popularity and racing excellence best resounded with the public and gained recognition for the sport during the past year.
This season, the Secretariat Vox Populi Horse of 2019 headlines the ticket for the America’s Best Racing Fan Choice Awards in a partnership that will allow fans to vote in the online poll at Secretariat.com as well as AmericasBestRacing.net for one of six nominees selected by the Vox Populi Committee. Voters also have the option to write in a racehorse of their choice at Secretariat.com. Voting will be open through Nov. 20.
The recipient of the Secretariat Vox Populi Horse of 2019, along with the winners of the other Fan Choice Awards categories, will be announced at 8 p.m. ET on Dec. 19 in a digital video show to air at AmericasBestRacing.net and later on Fox Sports 2. A public trophy presentation for the 2019 Vox Populi winner is planned for January.
This year’s nominees are Belvoir Bay, the 6-year-old mare who survived the 2017 wildfire at San Luis Rey Downs and set a new track record in her spectacular win in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint; Bricks and Mortar, the 5-year-old turf king whose victory in the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf capped off an undefeated 2019 season over six different tracks and earnings of more than $6.7 million; Maximum Security, the talented, disqualified winner of the Kentucky Derby whose successful racing season included victories in the Florida Derby, Haskell Invitational Stakes and the Bold Ruler Handicap; Midnight Bisou, the spirited 4-year-old filly whose eight graded stakes starts in 2019 returned seven wins and one second-place finish; Mitole, the speedy 4-year-old colt whose commanding victories in the Metropolitan Mile and Breeders’ Cup Sprint established him as one of the year’s most versatile and respected top earners; and Omaha Beach, the 3-year-old Arkansas Derby winner and scratched Kentucky Derby favorite whose compelling racing season featured a victorious return in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship after recuperating from surgery that kept him from competing in the Triple Crown races.
“This year’s Vox Populi recipient will be the 10th winner to be honored with this award since my mother established it in 2010,” said Kate Chenery Tweedy, daughter of Penny Chenery. “Since then, the Secretariat Vox Populi award has recognized a diverse field that has included both unsung heroes and celebrated champions, and all have been acknowledged for their excellence on the track and the connection they’ve made with racing fans. My mother understood that racing’s heartbeat is its fans and the love they have for the horses, and our family is proud to continue in this tradition.”
The list of previous Vox Populi winners reads as a who’s who among the sport’s contemporary superstars and beloved equine heroes: Winx (2018), Ben’s Cat (2017), California Chrome (2016 and 2014), American Pharoah (2015), Mucho Macho Man (2013), Paynter (2012), Rapid Redux (2011), and 2010 inaugural winner Zenyatta.