February 23, 2009 - Champion racehorse Seabiscuit, whose key championship and retirement years were spent at Ridgewood Ranch in Willits, CA, will be featured on a Seabiscuit Stamped Envelope (44 cents) in 2009 commemorating his outstanding win against Triple Crown Winner War Admiral. The special stamped envelope is scheduled for release on May 11.
As 1938 horse of the year, Seabiscuit is well known for defeating War Admiral during his record setting race at Pimlico racetrack in Maryland. The horserace drew around thousands of spectators and millions of Americans gathered around their radios to listen in across the country, including President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Considered a West coast underdog, the champ won by four lengths setting an incredible track record. The Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee recommended the stamp as a tribute to the story based on Seabiscuit's achievements against seemingly insurmountable odds inspiring millions of Americans during extremely trying economic times. Artist John Mattos created the design, which depicts a scene from the famous 1938 matchrace.
The US Postal Service announced the special stamped envelope is scheduled for release on May 11th along with an announced rate change and a Forever personalized stamped envelope. "An unassuming champion, Seabiscuit raised the hopes and spirits of a beleaguered nation during the Great Depression with a series of unlikely victories. A small, dull brown, unattractive horse, he ran perhaps his greatest race against just a single horse: the 1937 Triple Crown winner War Admiral. Held on Nov. 1, 1938, at Pimlico in Maryland, the race drew around 40,000 spectators and was broadcast on the radio to 40 million listeners across the country, including President Franklin D. Roosevelt. War Admiral, the favorite to win, ran his fastest time at the track distance by 1-3/16 miles. However, Seabiscuit won the race by four lengths and set a blazing track record in the process. Artist John Mattos created the design, which depicts a scene from the exciting 1938 match race between Seabiscuit and War Admiral." stated the official US Postal Service press announcement.
"We believe the stamp will be an appealing and informative reminder of the legend of Seabiscuit." said Tracy Livingston, President of the Seabiscuit Heritage Foundation. "Certainly it is an honor to have Seabiscuit added to the Postal Service commemorative stamp program." Livingston hopes the stamp might also lend attention to the preservation efforts of the foundation in regard to historic Ridgewood Ranch, the home and final resting place of Seabiscuit. Each year hundreds of visitors stream to Northern California to see the beautiful landscapes and buildings that constitute Seabiscuit's legacy. Many of the historic buildings remaining from the Howard and Seabiscuit era are in an urgent need of preservation. Still a working ranch, Ridgewood has been designated one of America’s most threatened historic places by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Preservation efforts are currently underway to preserve and protect Seabiscuit's legacy for generations.
The Seabiscuit Heritage Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization formed to promote the cultural legacy of the Ridgewood Ranch through historic preservation, environmental conservation and public education. To make a contribution or for further information, contact the Seabiscuit Heritage Foundation @Ridgewood Ranch, 16200 North Hwy. 101, Willits, CA 95490 e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.seabiscuitheritage.org
Seabiscuit Stamped Envelope Courtesy of USPS
1938 Pimlico Special Seabiscuit vs. War Admiral