Photo Credit: (http://www.mnopedia.org/thing/dan-patch)
Dan Patch (1896-1916) was the outstanding pacer of his day. He broke world speed records at least 14 times in the early 1900s, finally setting the world’s record for the fastest mile by a harness horse (1 minute:55 seconds) during a time trial in 1906, a record that stood unmatched for 32 years.
Dan Patch lost only two heats in his career and never lost a race. His speed was such that other owners would sometimes refuse to race their horses against him, leaving him to compete against the clock.
Dan Patch’s achievements made him a sports celebrity. At the height of his fame, he earned more than $1 million a year for his owner.
Crowds of 100,000 turned out for a glimpse of the horse. Dan Patch retired undefeated in 1909 as the holder of nine world records and spent much of his later life attending exhibitions.
(My sketch of Dan Patch)