Secretariat began his 3-yr-old year with an easy win in the Bay Shore Stakes at Aqueduct. In his next start, the Gotham Stakes, he led wire-to-wire for the first time in his career. However, in his next start, he finished 3rd in the Wood Memorial. His loss was due to a large abscess in his mouth. Because of the Wood Memorial results, some were considering Sham the top pick for the Kentucky Derby.