Justify led all the way Saturday to win the Belmont Stakes by 1¾ lengths and become horse racing’s 13th Triple Crown champion and second in four years.
The chestnut colt was the second undefeated horse to sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont, improving to 6-0 in a racing career that began on February 18. Seattle Slew was unbeaten when he won the Triple Crown in 1977.
Sent off as the 4-5 favorite, Justify went to the lead out of the starting gate and led nine rivals around the track’s sweeping turns. He was the first Triple Crown winner to face that many rivals in the 1½-mile Belmont.
Bob Baffert became the second trainer to win the Triple Crown twice. He did so with American Pharoah in 2015, ending a 37-year drought.
At 52, Mike Smith became the oldest jockey to win the Triple Crown.