Frank Hayes and a Sweet Kiss

June 4th, 1923 in Belmont Park New York. A steeplechase took place in which a 20-1 outsider called Sweet Kiss, jockeyed by Frank Hayes overcome the odds to win. It was Hayes’s first ever win, but all was not what it seemed. The owner of the horse, Miss A.M. Frayling, came over to congratulate Franky boy on the win, alongside race officials, when Hayes fell out of the saddle and lay lifeless on the floor! It was only then that they discovered Frank Hayes was dead. It was suggested that he had a heart attack in the saddle mid race, due to his extreme efforts to meet the weight requirements. The horse went on to win the race by a head with Frank still on its back, making Hayes the only jockey to have ever won a race while dead. He was buried wearing his colourful racing suit three days later. The horse, now nicknamed Sweet Kiss of Death (at least by us) never raced again.

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