Horses can reach incredible speeds at a full gallop, particularly racehorses, but how fast do Thoroughbreds run, is it the fastest breed in the world? The Thoroughbred is certainly one of the fastest horses on the plant. However, over a short distance, it is easily overtaken by another.
How Fast Do Thoroughbreds Run
The top speed ever recorded by a Thoroughbred is 43.496 mph (70.76km/h). The Thoroughbred racehorse, Winning Brew, set this speed record in 2008 at the Penn National Race Course. However, this achievement doesn’t necessarily mean Winning Brew is the fastest ever Thoroughbred.
This title goes to the great Secretariat. No horse is yet to beat Secretariat’s times over a dirt track. In 1973, Secretariat took the Triple Crown after a 25-year drought. Man O’War, Sea Biscuit, Black Caviar, and Valiant Peter also take top honors as the fastest ever Thoroughbreds.
Genetics is not the only factor that affects how fast Thoroughbreds run. The individual horse’s stride length is one of the biggest influences on its speed. The make-up of the horse’s muscles also impacts how quickly it can move through its stride.
Man O’War’s stride was an unbelievable 28 feet compared to the average racehorse’s 20 feet. Secretariat’s stride reached 24 feet. It is interesting to wonder which of these two horses wins in a match race.
The average racehorse covers 130 to 140 strides per minute. Stride length and speed do not necessarily correspond with the speed of the fastest Thoroughbreds. While Secretariat and Man O’War were big horses, Seabiscuit stood smaller than average at just 15 hands.
Fastest Horse In The World
When asked what the fastest horse in the world is, it’s easy to the Thoroughbred. However, the distance the horse runs affect this answer. In fact, the fastest horse in the world is the American Quarter Horse.
Most modern Quarter Horses work on ranches and compete in a variety of western riding events. However, the breed started off like a racehorse. Quarter Horses run sprint races over a quarter mile, hence their name.
Over a quarter-mile distance, it is faster than any other breed. The Quarter Horse can accelerate to top speed incredibly quick, faster than a Thoroughbred. Their confirmation is different than a Thoroughbred, which gives them this ability.
The fastest times produced by Quarter Horses have reached an electric 55 mph. Both the Quarter Horse and the Thoroughbred gallop at least twice as fast as the average horse. The average horse gallops at a speed of 27 mph.
Why Can Horses Gallop So Fast
Horses have speed due to their evolution over many hundreds of years. As a herd animal, the horse is a prey animal. Because of this, the horse has developed a number of defensive moves. The most important defense the horse has from predators is escape.
Natural predators of the horse also possess the ability to run quickly. If a horse can outrun a predator, it is safe and its first choice when under threat. If running does not work, the horse can kill an attacker with a kick and cause serious damage with its bite.
After domestication, humans took notice of the horse’s ability to run at great speed. They harnessed the speed to use for sport, such as racing. With careful selection, the quickest horses were used for breeding to produce specialized racehorses. The result is the Thoroughbred and the Quarter Horse, amongst other breeds.
The Arabian Horse Speed
In addition to the Thoroughbred and the Quarter Horse, the Arabian is one of the fastest horses in the world. Despite its lightweight and fine features, the Arabian is a very hardy horse. The breed is able to withstand traveling long distances at a good pace in a harsh environment.
It is the Arabian that is the foundation of the Thoroughbred. All modern racehorses descend from one of three Arabian stallions, particularly the Darley Arabian. Arabian horses also race, though it is less familiar to more people.
Arabians race over a distance of 6 furlongs in most cases. However, distances range from 4 ½ furlongs to 1 ¾ mile. The fastest speed ran by an Arabian is 40.39 mph, with an average of 34.2 mph.
Conclusion About How Fast Can Horses Run
All horses run faster than humans by a significant amount. Over a sprint distance, the Quarter Horse reaches top speed and beats the Thoroughbred. However, the Thoroughbred has more ability to keep a high speed over a longer distance.
The Arabian, while faster than more horse breeds, cannot outrun the Thoroughbred or Quarter Horse on the racetrack. However, over a long-distance endurance race, the Arabian has the most stamina.
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