“There is no indecision left, incidentally, in the Jones family at least, as to the respective merits of Citation and Coaltown. “The Derby left little doubt about the matter,” said Jimmy. But perhaps what had many fooled about the respective merits of the two horses was that fabulous work of Coaltown down at Hialeah Park during the winter.
Jimmy tells it this way: “There was but two watches at the break that morning, mine and Ben’s. It just happened that way. I was on a pony, and Ben was on a pony about 100 feet down the track from me. Coaltown broke. I tabbed the first eighth in :10 and some small change, got him at the quarter in :21 and some change, the three furlongs in :33 and a half mile in :43 ⅘. I couldn’t believe my watch. I galloped down to Ben and asked him what he had obtained. Ben had him the same as myself, but at first, thought his watch had gone haywire. We didn’t know then that we had a really good horse, but we knew we had a truly fast one.”
It might be mentioned that the world record for the half mile is Tie Score’s :45 ⅖, at the Hipodromo de las Americas in Mexico City.”
(Oscar Otis / Daily Racing Form, 05/13/1948)