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Majestic Prince was purchased in September 1967 for a then record price of $250,000. The California based colt grew to a powerful 1,120 pounds while being trained by Johnny Longden, a longtime friend of Frank McMahon who had retired in 1966 as the winningest jockey of all time.
Raced lightly as a 2-year-old, Majestic Prince won both of his starts in his 1968 fall campaign. Ridden by Bill Hartack, at age three, he quickly became the dominant 3-year-old in West Coast racing, capping it off with an eight-length victory in the most important Santa Anita Derby. Unbeaten, Majestic Prince headed for Louisville and the Kentucky Derby.
The 1969 Kentucky Derby had a very strong field that deterred entries, and as such only eight horses went to the starting gate. Majestic Prince was the betting favorite. He drew the last post position, which meant he started from the far outside. Arts and Letters, racing along the rail, took the lead by the time they reached the mile pole and were about to ..