Ted Atkinson


Ted Atkinson


Photography of horse sports


This photographic portrait features jockey Theodore "Ted" Frederick Atkinson in front of hanging silks at Belmont Park.

Ted Atkinson (1916-2005) began riding professionally at the age of 21. In his first decade of riding he rose to America’s leading jockey by wins and money earned in 1944 and 1946.

Atkinson rode War Relic in an upset victory over the 1941 Triple Crown Winner Whirlaway in the Narrangansett Special. That ride gained him the national recognition that continued throughout his 21-year career.

Atkinson won the Preakness and Belmont Stakes riding Greentree’s Capot in 1949 and the New York Handicap Triple riding Tom Fool in 1953. Of his 23,661 career mounts, he considered Tom Fool the best and brightest horse he ever rode, writing in his diary that “Tom Fool had muscles in his eyebrows.” Atkinson rode the colt to win all of his ten races in 1953 — the same year in which Tom Fool won the American Horse of the Year honors.

Atkinson received the George Woolf Memorial Award and was inducted into the National Museum of Racing's Hall of Fame in 1957.


Bernard Stanley Morgan




This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Physical rights are retained by the Keeneland Library. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.


black and white photograph


still image

Original Format

acetate negative


02 - Morgan A93245 - 1955 Theodore Ted Frederick Atkinson Jockey portrait.jpg


Bernard Stanley Morgan, “Ted Atkinson,” The Keeneland Library, accessed October 14, 2019, https://keenelandlibrary.omeka.net/items/show/200.

Output Formats