Sports

Justify's value skyrockets to $60M with Triple Crown win

Justify's value skyrockets to $60M with Triple Crown win

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Triple Crown victor Justify has returned to Churchill Downs to rest as the track where the quest began prepares to celebrate the milestone.

Justify is still the fastest horse on the planet, and could potentially win more prizes on the track at the Travers Stakes or even the Breeder's Cup later in the year. Adjusting for inflation, that figure would be $104 million today. In the wake of his Belmont triumph on Saturday, they said they were open to the idea of keeping him on the racetrack but wanted to be absolutely sure he was healthy after a whirlwind schedule in which he raced and won six times, beginning in mid-February.

Justify's victory moved Baffert past D. Wayne Lukas to become the winningest trainer in Triple Crown races with 15. His milestone run follows that of 2015 champion American Pharoah, also trained by Bob Baffert.

"To me, Abel Tasman and Hopportunity, when they set the stage early, I thought this is going to be good", Baffert said. None of the other nine horses had a chance to catch him.

Following the race Geroux admitted that he struggled to keep control of Restroing Hope, while owner Gary West told the New York Post that he didn't like the way Restoring Hope raced and that he didn't understand Geroux's race strategy.

Justify led all the way in achieving one of the sports world's toughest feats 45 years to the day that Secretariat won the Belmont by a record 31 lengths.

"He has natural speed", Baffert said. "He's become a household name and I'm looking forward to his next race as much as [everyone else]". We're just so proud of him.

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Wearing a white blanket advertising his status as the sport's 13th Triple Crown victor, Justify walked laps inside the barn before coming outside to greet a slew of cameras.

The three-year-old colt Justify won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, after previously winning the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes, the three most prestigious horse racing events of the year.

Steve Lewandowski, the New York Gaming Commission steward, said there was no plan to question Geroux, the Daily Racing Form reported.

Smith said Baffert made his dreams come true.

"Opinions die", Baffert said.

The eighth-place finisher cut back and forth during the race, cutting off Noble Indy and altering the positions of several other horses while never really challenging Justify for the lead.


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