Justify runs for the 13th Triple Crown in history with the last coming in 2015 by American Pharoah. Before that it had been 37 years. Affirmed won it in 1978 after Seattle Slew had won it all in 1977. Justify goes off at 4:5 odds.
Post time: 5:37 PM CT, NBC.
Bob Baffert goes for Triple Crown winning race number 15, which would break a tie with D. Wayne Lukas for most triple crown race victories.
While Justify looks like the appealing pick here, and it might be a wet track as there is a chance of rain and a t storm which would favor the horse, the thoroughbred has the No.1 post position, a tough spot to start on the inside of 9 other horses, and trying to get out fast with the other jockeys trying to pin in Mike Smith and the horse will be challenging. And this race is a mile and a half, the longest of the 3 Triple Crown races. I just don't see this horse as good enough to capture it all. It's raced 6 times since February and I don't think it'll have enough left in the tank to capture "The Test of the Champion."
I'm going with the trainer I still trust the most. He won the 2017 Derby and the 2017 Belmont with Always Dreaming and Tapwrit, respectively. He's got a super jockey on the mount in John Valzsquez, who's won 4 triple crown races, including the Derby last year on Always Dreaming. Going to take 50 year old Todd Pletcher, who has won 3 Derby's and 3 Belmonts. I like Pletcher, whom I think is the best trainer in horse racing right now, Velazquez, and their horse which stands at 8:1 odds. I like his post position at 8th out of 10 thoroughbreds. Just don't think Justify is as good a horse as Pharoah was, and the grueling 3rd leg of the Triple Crown is the hardest at a mile and a half. Justify's post position is a real factor to me and I see the horse as a little tired right now.