Justify is still on track to complete the Triple Crown of horse racing after taking the win in the 2018 Preakness Stakes on Saturday, beating Bravazo and Tenfold to the top spot. Good Magic, the Kentucky Derby runner-up, finished in fourth place.
According to the Baltimore Sun, Justify's finishing time was 1:55.93, an acceptable time given the conditions. The track at Pimlico was sloppy and muddy, and foggy conditions made it almost impossible to see the field at times.
Here's a look at the video highlights from the race:
The full race results:
Win: Justify; Jockey: Mike Smith; Trainer: Bob Baffert
Place: Bravazo; Jockey: Luis Saez; Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas
Show: Tenfold; Jockey: Ricardo Santana Jr.; Trainer: Steve Asmussen
4th: Good Magic; Jockey: Jose Ortiz; Trainer: Chad Brown
5th: Lone Sailor; Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.; Trainer: Thomas Amoss
6th: Sporting Chance; Jockey: Luis Contreras; Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas
7th: Diamond King; Jockey: Javier Castellano; Trainer: John Servis
8th: Quip; Jockey: Florent Geroux; Trainer: Rodolphe Brisset
The payout for a $2 bet was as follows, per NBC Sports:
1st: Justify (Win: $2.80; Place: $2.80; Show: $2.60)
2nd: Bravazo (Place: $7.60; Show: $4.80)
3rd: Tenfold (Show: $6.80)
Good Magic pushed the pre-race favourite throughout the race and even seemed to surge ahead in the final turn before Justify turned things on in the stretch. The biggest challenge came from Bravazo and Tenfold, however, who both came out of the background and nearly overtook the leader.
The race was a tough one for the unbeaten colt:
Justify nearly lost his lead in the final furlong, which is a bad omen for the Belmont Stakes on June 9. He'll go up against fresher horses who didn't race at Pimlico, and over the longer distance, he may not have enough left in the tank to hold on this time around.
Per Horse Racing Nation, Justify has started five races since February after not racing as a two-year-old. That's a heavy workload, especially when you take into account the rough conditions for both the Derby and the Preakness.
At 12 furlongs, the track at Belmont is 2.5 furlongs longer than the Preakness. While it may not seem like much, the final leg of the Triple Crown has often been where great champions have tripped up in the past―the likes of California Chrome, I'll Have Another and even the highly rated Smarty Jones all saw their bids ended at Belmont.
Trainers will take courage the unbeaten Justify is not invincible on the basis of the Preakness, and in all likelihood, we'll see a strong field for the Belmont Stakes. A Triple Crown is still possible, but right now, it doesn't seem likely.