Johnstown was an American Hall of Fame Thoroughbred racehorse who won two out of every three races he competed in. Bred at Claiborne Farm, he was purchased by William Woodward, Sr. and raced under his Belair Stable banner.
After a successful season racing at age two when he won seven of his twelve starts, in the spring of 1939 Johnstown gave trainer Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons his third straight Wood Memorial Stakes, an important stepping stone to the U.S. Triple Crown races.
U.S. Triple Crown Races
The heavy favorite going into the Kentucky Derby, Johnstown did not disappoint. Despite a poor start, under jockey James Stout he took command by the mile pole and defeated Challedon by eight lengths. In the Preakness Stakes, Johnstown finished a disappointuing 5th to winner Challedon. With Challedon not eligible for the Belmont Stakes, Johnstown easily won the final leg of the U.S. Triple Crown races. From there he went on to win several more important races and wound up his highly successful season with seven wins in nine starts.
As A Stud
Retired to stud at Claiborne Farm, Johnstown met with modest success as a sire, producing winners of only six Graded stakes races. However, he was a leading broodmare sire during the 1950s with his most famous offspring being Hall of Famer Nashua.
Johnstown died in 1950 at the age of fourteen and was buried in the equine cemetery at Claiborne Farm. He was posthumously inducted into the United States' National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1992. His portrait by artist Martin Stainforth can be seen as part of the museum's equine collection.