The Physics Factbook

Edited by Glenn Elert -- Written by his students

An educational, Fair Use website

Bibliographic Entry | Result (w/surrounding text) |
Standardized Result |
---|---|---|

"Horse." World Book Encyclopedia. Chicago: World Book, 2000: H343. |
"… the thoroughbred can run … a mile (1.6 kilometers) in about 1 and ½ minutes." | 17.78 m/s |

Christopher, David. Winning at the Track. Chicago: Liberty, 1994: 25. |
"Speed Rating Table: Distance: 1 and 1/8 mile Time: 1 minute and 46 seconds" |
17.08 m/s |

Flatter, Ron. Secretariat remains No. 1 name in racing. Sports Centuy. ESPN. | "Secretariat's response went beyond unreal. He won by a jaw-dropping 31 lengths. His time of 2:24 for 1 1/2 miles set a world record many argue may never be broken." | 16.764 m/s |

Race Results. Horse Racing. ESPN. [page content changes daily] | "Race Name: Preakness Stakes Distance: One and three sixteenth miles Winning Time: 1:56.04." |
16.47 m/s |

American Quarter Horse Racing. Horse Racing. ESPN. | "The American Quarter Horse is the king of speed. In fact, racing American Quarter Horses have been clocked at nearly 50 mph as they cross the finish line." | 20 m/s |

In order to find the speed of a horse we must understand the formula for speed. The formula is

*v* = Δ*s*/Δ*t*

where Δ*s* is the change in distance
and Δ*t* is the change in time. This
is the only formula that is needed in order to find the speed
or velocity of a horse.

In order to calculate this formula, the two starting values that are needed are the change in distance and the elapsed time throughout the distance the horse ran, Once these values are obtained you simply plug them in to the formula and get the average velocity of the horse.

For my calculations I obtained many statistics of race results
of certain horses. One of these horses was *Secretariat*
(the winner of the Triple Crown in 1973). I found the race results
with the race distance and the winning time. From these numbers
I found out the velocity of *Secretariat* when he won the
Triple Crown. The velocity seemed to be constant with the other
velocities that I had previously found.

All of the results that I Have found in this project have been numbers based on the horse breed known as the thoroughbred. The thoroughbred breed is the common breed used in horse racing and is known to be one of the fastest breeds on the planet.

After all my calculations have been completed, I have come to the conclusion that the average velocity for the fastest breed of horse (the thoroughbred) is about 17 m/s. This is a remarkable fact considering that 17 m/s is roughly 38 miles per hour. This is just as fast as a car yet it is an animal that is running this fast.

Overall, we can see that horses are very fast animals and are fascinating to watch. Especially when the Triple Crown is on the line.

Andrew Sigal -- 2000

Glenn Elert Author, Illustrator, Webmaster Chaos, E-World, Facts, Get Bent, Physics |

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