FIRST IN 37 YEARS
Temecula, CA - 'American Pharoah has cemented his misspelled name among horse racing
royalty, claiming the Triple Crown with his win at the Belmont Stakes on
Saturday, a feat not done since 1978.
Pharoah ended the Crown drought by sweeping the top three races, becoming only the 12th horse ever to do so.
Pharoah, ridden by jockey Victor Espinoza, beat a tough field of seven
thoroughbreds despite the many factors. He did not come out of the gate well, but quickly took
the lead in first quarter.
Trailing American Pharoah for most of the
race was Materiality, before Mubtaahij and Frosted made plays for
second. But no one could pass American Pharoah, who made history.
Horses Frosted and Keen Ice took second and third, respectively.
he was a heavy favorite heading into the race at Belmont Park in
Elmont, New York, American Pharoah had plenty going against him and his
Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert. For one, Pharoah was competing with
far less rest than his competitors, as the only horse at Belmont who ran
in the other two Triple Crown races, the Preakness Stakes and the
Kentucky Derby. Then there is the length of the Belmont track, which can
easily leave horses running on empty before the finish line. Belmont is
a 1 1/2-mile race, while the Derby is 1¼ miles and the Preakness 1 3/16
miles. For that reason, the final race in Triple Crown series is called
the “test of the champion.”
Baffert, the second-oldest to win the Triple Crown, said after the race he was "very emotional."
thinking about my parents. I wish they were alive to see this," Baffert
said. "They were with me today. I was talking to them the whole race."
Pharoah secured his Crown over the course of five weeks, winning the
Kentucky Derby on May 2 and then the Preakness on May 16 on a
Along with the Crown, Pharoah’s win comes
with a $800,000 winning. While it was Pharoah’s first attempt at the
holy grail of racing, it was Baffert’s fourth, and jockey Espinoza’s
third. “I've been through it three times," Baffert said. "I've been
really lucky for three times, and I got beat by an inch one time.”
Pharoah is owned by Ahmed Zayat, originally of Egypt, who became a
successful businessman after moving to the U.S. at age 18.
With the win, Zayat, American Pharoah's owner, takes home a cool $800,000 (with Espinoza getting $80,000 of that amount, according to ). Here's the full breakdown:
(Story source - Andrew Hart, HuffPo; edited for content, Ed)