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Updated Thursday, December 12, 2019, 7:05 AM CT
June 9, 2019
Sir Winston takes the Belmont Stakes
Sir Winston captured the $1.5 million race Saturday, holding off favored Tacitus by a length.
There was some jostling amongst the horses which lead to a moment of hesitation before the winner was eventually officially announced. Could there be another DQ? No.
The win gave trainer Mark Casse the final two jewels in the showcase for 3-year-old thoroughbreds. He won the Preakness with War of Will, who was expected to battle Tacitus in the 1 1/2 mile Belmont.
''I said all week he was doing really well,'' Casse said. ''He had a race over the track. What can I say? It's just exciting.''
Sir Winston, who was making his Triple Crown debut, finished second in the Peter Pan Stakes, the traditional prep for the Belmont.
Rosario rode him for the first time in that race and the two put on a show Saturday in front of a crowd of 56,217, earning $800,000 for owner Tracy Farmer.
Long shot Joevia finished third and Tax was fourth.
The Triple Crown grind caught up to Preakness winner War of Will, who ran in all three races. He finished ninth in the 10-horse field.
"I could see where War of Will was struggling a little bit," Casse said. "He looked like maybe he was a little flat today."
The Belmont capped an entertaining Triple Crown highlighted by the disqualification of Maximum Security in the Kentucky Derby. It sparked interest in thoroughbred racing despite no possibility of the third Triple Crown winner in five years, coming on the heels of Justify last year and American Pharoah in 2015.
Sir Winston paid $22.40, $8.80 and $6.10. Tacitus returned $3.90 and $3.20 as the 9-5 favorite. Joevia hung on for third, paying $8.70.
After Tax, Master Fencer was fifth followed by Spinoff, Everfast, Intrepid Heart, War of Will, and Bourbon War. The winning time was 2:28.30 on the fast track under sunny skies.
The win was the third in 10 starts for the slow-developing Sir Winston. Casse always believed in the horse despite early struggles.
"We're very proud of him," the 58-year-old trainer said. "He's kind of what our operation represents. We develop horses. The first two times he ran, he got beat 10 or 20 lengths. I can remember having a conversation with Mr. Farmer up at Saratoga and I said `Don't give up on him.''"
After a disqualification in the Kentucky Derby, and a runaway horse in the Preakness, the Belmont Stakes goes to a 10-1 long shot.
Ran DeBord - AllAccessSportingNews
Source: AASNSports; NBCSports; APwire
The Belmont Stakes
When: Saturday, June 8, 2019
The final and longest leg of the Triple Crown
"The Third Jewel of the Triple Crown"
Where: Belmont Park
Elmont, New York, United States
Race type: Thoroughbred
Distance: 1½ miles (12 furlongs)
Record: 2:24, Secretariat (1973)
Weight: Colt/Gelding: 126 pounds (57 kg); Filly: 121 pounds (55 kg)
Purse: US $1.5 million
2019 Belmont Stakes Odds
The 2019 Belmont Stakes takes place on Saturday, June 8th from Belmont Park in New York.
This year's race will feature the 2019 Preakness Stakes winner War of Will, who will likely be the only horse to race in all three legs of this year's Triple Crown.
There are expected to be new runners for the Belmont plus a handful of horses that ran in the Derby but skipped the Preakness.
War of Will 11/4
Intrepid Heart 10/1
Bourbon War 12/1
Master Fencer 12/1
Sir Winston 12/1
Odds Subject to Change - Updated 6.8.19
The Belmont Stakes
Distance: 1 1/2 miles (12 furlongs)
Track: Dirt, Left-handed
Weight: Colt/Gelding: 126 lbs (57.2 kg)
Filly: 121 lbs. (54.9 kg)
Purse: US $1.5 million
Number of Horses In Race: 20
Belmont Park Elmont, New York, USA
List of Triple Crown winners
1919 Sir Barton
1930 Gallant Fox
1937 War Admiral
1943 Count Fleet
1977 Seattle Slew
2015 American Pharoah
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