Justify is one step away from becoming the second Triple Crown winner in three years after capturing the 2018 Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on Saturday.
Along with Justify's triumph, Bravazo rebounded from a sixth-place finish at the Kentucky Derby to place at the Preakness and show went to Tenfold.
Here is how the race played out, via NBC Sports:
Just as he did at the Kentucky Derby two weeks, Justify had to overcome a messy track to keep his undefeated record intact (5-0).
This time, though, Justify didn't waste time exerting his will. He led right out of the gate and never let up. Good Magic was nipping at his heels most of the way but didn't have enough juice down the final stretch to pull off the upset and wound up settling for fourth place.
Earlier in the day, Penelope P. Miller of America's Best Racing captured a photo of what the track looked like after torrential downpours throughout the week:
Justify, Good Magic, Bravazo and Lone Sailor—the four horses running on Saturday who also took part in the Kentucky Derby—and their jockeys knew what to expect from the weather conditions because Churchill Downs was also hit by rain.
Things looked bad on the track when the race began because of heavy fog that rolled into the area late. It made visibility difficult, but jockey Mike Smith kept Justify on line the entire way.
Despite the weather, history was on in Justify's side because he is trained by Bob Baffert.
"All of Baffert's previous four Derby winners have gone on to win the Preakness," per Childs Walker of the Baltimore Sun. "The white-haired trainer makes no bones about working his horses hard. Some break down, but those who've made it to the Derby in fine form have held up to the rigors of the subsequent races."
Per ESPN Stats & Info, Baffert will be chasing his own history at the Belmont Stakes:
This was the first time in Justify's still-young racing career that he had just two weeks between races. Given the grind of racing through the mud in back-to-back events, as well as pre-race training and workouts, it seemed to be asking a lot of him to capture another Triple Crown event.
Making all of this more impressive is that Justify didn't start racing until this year. Every challenge presented to him has been passed with flying colors.
The next one will be the most difficult, and it comes in three weeks. Only 12 horses have ever won the Triple Crown. The Belmont Stakes on June 9 is all that stands between Justify and immortality.