Sport

Giants' Chris Mara jabs Patriots, Gronkowski after Justify wins Triple Crown

Giants' Chris Mara jabs Patriots, Gronkowski after Justify wins Triple Crown

Smith said Justify was so calm in the gate that he was anxious he might not break. Justify was the first colt to win the Derby without racing as 2-year-old in 136 years.

"He would be the most valuable stallion outside Frankel ever to stand in the world, and we are fortunate to be part of the story", Field said.

The last horse to win the Triple Crown was American Pharaoh, who accomplished the feat in 2015.

Justify shredded the history books.

Next Saturday, Justify's owners, along with trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Mike Smith, will receive their engraved Kentucky Derby trophies at Churchill. Fitzsimmons won in 1930 with Gallant Fox and in 1935 with Omaha.

"Scat Daddy got off to a great start at stud and was the leading freshman sire of 2011 with more than $1.5 million in progeny earnings that was good enough to rank third behind Kitten's Joy and Smart Strike on the general 2-year-old sire list", according to BloodHorse. But he likely won't be lauded as horse racing's history savior, like American Pharoah. He even likened 52-year-old jockey, Mike Smith, to quarterback Eli Manning. He celebrated by grabbing white carnations from the winner's blanket and tossing them in the air.

"It was exciting to think about what could be down the road with this horse", Brown said.




Smith and Justify took a curtain call before entering the winner's circle.

Justify's victory gives racing its second Triple Crown victor of the decade.

Purchased for $500,000, Justify earned $800,000 for his Belmont win, giving him $3,798,000 in his brief career.

Three races at various distances on three different tracks over a span of five weeks. Justify, who won the first two legs, won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 9, 2018, to complete horse racing's Triple Crown. Horses and riders aren't used to 11/2-mile races in the USA, where the focus is on sprinting. "He's sent from heaven". Instead of thanking the horse's owner and the trainer, the very first thing he told NBC while being interviewed on horseback following the race, "First of all, I want to thank my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ". Justify is also running on the inside post, where no horse has won the Belmont since 1997. Trainers are looking for experienced riders to lead their thoroughbreds to victory, and no one knows horse racing better than Smith. Restoring Hope, who like Justify is trained by Baffert, last ran May 5 but not in the Derby.

Smith got the colt into a relaxed rhythm under a moderate pace heading into the backstretch, and he had an easy trip from there.

Turning for home full of running, he looked to have all his rivals toiling, although the ex-Jeremy Noseda-trained Gronkowski - a victor at Newcastle in March - ran an unbelievable race to be second, having trailed the field by some distance from the stalls.


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