08 Jun Belmont Stakes Winners in Horse Country
Spring is a time for big dreams here in the Bluegrass. Foaling season is in full swing, and with every new foal born comes the hope that they are the next superstar on and off the racetrack. Each foal has the potential to become the next great equine athlete, and that hope drives the breeding and racing industry.
The Triple Crown brings to light these hopes and dreams unlike anything else in Thoroughbred horse racing, a chance to become one of the few horses to win the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes and have their name etched in the history books. The final leg of the Triple Crown, the G1 Belmont Stakes, is set to be contested this Saturday, June 11 at Belmont Park just outside of New York City.
Horse Country is home to some of the top racehorses before, during and after their racing careers, including nine of the past twelve winners of the G1 Belmont Stakes. Learn more about these winners who now call Horse Country member locations home!
2021 – Essential Quality
After landing just out of the money at the 2021 Kentucky Derby, Essential Quality went on to beat Hot Rod Charlie by one length in the 2021 Belmont Stakes. Essential Quality is owned by Horse Country member Godolphin. Members who visited Jonabell Farm (now the Godolphin mares and foals live at Gainsborough Farm) in 2018 more than likely saw Essential Quality as a foal!
Essential Quality now stands at Jonabell Farm, and you can learn more and book a tour here.
2020 – Tiz the Law
In 2020, the order of the Triple Crown races was changed because of the COVID-19 pandemic – the Triple Crown started with the Belmont Stakes followed by the Kentucky Derby and finished with the Preakness Stakes. The order change caused the Belmont Stakes to be shortened to 1 ⅛ miles instead of the regular 1 ½ miles. Tiz the Law rolled home in the 2020 Belmont Stakes by over one length.
Tiz the Law now stands stud at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Versailles, Kentucky. Learn more and book a tour of Coolmore at Ashford Stud here.
2018 – Justify
Just a few years off of the Triple Crown triumph of American Pharoah, the undefeated Justify followed in the hoofprints of his future stablemate in becoming the 13th Triple Crown winner. Owned by Horse Country member WinStar Farm in partnership with China Horse Club, Head of Plains Partners LLC and Starlight Racing, Justify strode to a single length victory under jockey Mike Smith.
Justify now stands stud at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Versailles, Kentucky. Learn more and book a tour of Coolmore at Ashford Stud here.
2017 – Tapwrit
Tapwrit entered the 2017 Belmont Stakes with 5-1 odds, second favorite behind Irish War Cry. Tapwrit stayed in the middle for a majority of the race, gradually closing in on Irish War Cry, going on to win the race by two lengths.
Tapwrit currently is standing at stud at Gainesway. To learn more and book your tour click here.
2015 – American Pharoah
American Pharoah entered the Belmont Stakes off of impressive victories in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. His victory in the Belmont Stakes crowned him the 12th Triple Crown winner and the first one in 37 years.
American Pharoah now stands stud at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Versailles, Kentucky. Learn more and book a tour of Coolmore at Ashford Stud here.
2014 – Tonalist
Tonalist made waves with his Belmont Stakes win after surpassing the favored California Chrome, who was attempting to win the Triple Crown. Prior to running in the Belmont, Tonalist won the Peter Pan Stakes in May of 2014, making him the first horse since A.P. Indy in 1992 to win the Peter Pan and Belmont Stakes double.
Tonalist is currently standing at Lane’s End Farm. Learn more about Lane’s End and book a tour here.
2013 – Palice Malice
Palace Malice was eager to redeem himself after being overtaken in the Kentucky Derby to finish 12th. In the Belmont, Jockey Mike Smith went on to keep his colt behind the leaders for a majority of the race, before passing them on the final stretch and winning by three and a quarter lengths.
Palice Malice now stands at Three Chimneys Farm in Versailles, Kentucky. Learn more and book a tour here.
2012 – Union Rags
After a rough start in the Kentucky Derby, trainer Michael Matz set his sights on the Belmont Stakes for his colt Union Rags. Union Rags won by a neck after a battle for first with Paynter in the final strides of the race.
Union Rags currently stands at Lane’s End Farm. Learn more and book a tour here.
2010 – Drosselmeyer
Drosselmeyer entered into the Belmont Stakes at 13-1 odds and a new jockey, Mike Smith. When the race was underway Smith kept Drosselmeyer on the outside of the pack and a few lengths back to conserve his energy for the home stretch. This was the right call as they passed the favorites for the race, Ice Box and First Dude, to win the race by 1 ¾ lengths.
Drosselmeyer stands at Winstar Farm beside his father Distorted Humor. Learn more and book a tour here.