Belmont Stakes 2018 Results: Times, Payouts for Justify, Top Contenders

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistJune 11, 2018

Jockey Mike Smith tips his helmet to the crowd as he rides Justify to the winner's circle after winning the 150th running of the Belmont Stakes horse race and Triple Crown, Saturday, June 9, 2018, in Elmont, N.Y. (AP Photo/Peter Morgan)
Peter Morgan/Associated Press

Justify completed the Triple Crown by finishing 1 ¾ lengths ahead of Gronkowski to win the 2018 Belmont Stakes in Elmont, New York, on Saturday.

The winner passed the post "2 minutes and 28.18 seconds," per Melissa Hoppert of the New York Times.

It means Justify and his team claimed the biggest share from the total $1.5 million purse on offer. Gronkowski, part-owned by New England Patriots all-pro tight end Rob Gronkowski, earned his team $280,000, while third-placed Hofburg was rewarded with $150,000.


2018 Belmont Stakes Results (Post, Jockey, Trainer, per the NBC Broadcast)

1. Justify (1, Mike Smith, Bob Baffert) Payout: $800,000

2. Gronkowski, 1 ¾ lengths (6, Jose Ortiz, Chad Brown) Payout: $280,000

3. Hofburg, 3 ½ lengths (4, Irad Ortiz, William Mott) Payout: $150,000

4. Vino Rosso, 3 ¾ lengths (8, John Velazquez, Todd Pletcher): $100,000

5. Tenfold, 7 ¼ lengths (7, Ricardo Santana Jr., Steve Asmussen): $60,000

6. Bravazo, 8 ½ lengths (3, Luis Saez, D. Wayne Lukas): $45,000

7. Free Drop Billy, 9 ½ lengths (2, Robby Albarado, Dale Romans): $35,000

8. Restoring Hope, 38 ¾ lengths (5, Florent Geroux, Bob Baffert): $30,000

9. Blended Citizen, 51 ¾ lengths (10, Kyle Frey, Doug O'Neill)

10. Noble Indy, 54 lengths (9, Javier Castellano, Todd Pletcher)


2018 Belmont Stakes Payouts, per the NBC Broadcast

1st: Justify 4-5 (Win: $3.60; Place: $3.50; Show: $2.80)

2nd: Gronkowski 24-1 (Place: $13.80; Show: $7.00)

3rd: Hofburg 5-1 (Show: $3.70)

$2 Exacta (1-6): $89.00

$1 Trifecta (1-6-4): $229.74

$1 Superfecta (1-6-4-8): $1,051.50


Justify's place in history is now assured after trainer Bob Baffert's undefeated colt pulled away late to seal the Triple Crown and join a select group:

CBS Sports @CBSSports

Justify takes his place among legends. https://t.co/g3m54FmQ1K

Baffert also trained the last Triple Crown winner American Pharoah. Naturally, his latest achievement has many attaching the word "great" to the 65-year-old.

Gronkowski's trainer Chad Brown called Baffert's effort an "unbelievable training job, one of the greatest of all-time," per Tim Layden of Sports Illustrated.

It was a sentiment echoed by Jason Frakes of the Louisville Courier-Journal, who applauded Baffert's "ability to identify and attract the top horses on a yearly basis."

Frakes also noted how Baffert overtook D. Wayne Lukas with a 15th win in Triple Crown races. Justify secured Baffert's latest victory in style when jockey Mike Smith surged the horse over the line:

NBC Sports @NBCSports

The dream is now a reality! Justify has won the #TripleCrown! https://t.co/I3Tn4pBM1M

Smith, 52, who has yet to lose when in the saddle of Justify, took home 10 percent of the winners' purse, according to Tim Wood of Forbes.

Woods also noted how Gronkowski jockey Jose Ortiz and Hofburg rider Irad Ortiz claimed $14,000 and $7,500 respectively, representative of five percent of their winnings.

Gronkowski came with a late run from the back to be the only horse who put anything like pressure on the eventual winner.

Although his colt came in second, Brown was still proud of the effort:

Alicia Wincze Hughes @BH_AHughes

Brown on Gronkowski getting second after being dead last much of the way “He’s a top quality horse. He’s been showing us signs in the AM that he could handle the dirt. I was super impressed with this horse. He still almost got there. Couldn’t be more proud.”

Brown's horse served notice about his talent, while Hofburg also impressed. Ultimately, though, no one credibly challenged Justify's Triple Crown bid or got close to an outrageously physically gifted colt capable of dominating for years. 


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