History was made today as American Pharoah won the Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York and became the first horse since Affirmed to win the Triple Crown. American Pharoah was ridden by Victor Espinoza.
Affirmed won the Triple Crown 37 years ago in 1978. American Pharoah joins Affirmed, Secretariat, Seattle Slew and War Admiral just to name a few who’ve won the Triple Crown.
American Pharoah accomplished one of the rare feats in sport Saturday, becoming the first horse in 37 years and just the 12th horse ever to win the Triple Crown.
The heavily favored colt completed the quest by running away from seven rivals in the Belmont Stakes, three weeks after a rain-soaked dash in the Preakness and five weeks after a gritty, stretch-duel victory in the Kentucky Derby.
American Pharoah’s name now moves into the history books alongside equine immortals like Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Citation and War Admiral. And horse racing finally has the superstar it has hungered for – a fluid athlete with a massive stride who seems to float over the ground.
The last horse to win all three of North America’s biggest races was Affirmed in 1978. Since then, 13 horses have come to this historic track having won the first two legs of the Crown. All had failed (with I’ll Have Another scratched prior to the 2012 running), raising doubts whether the quest was still attainable for the modern thoroughbred.