Triple Crown Winners: List of 13 Horses Who Won

ImageJustify ridden by Mike Smith began his Triple Crown bid by winning the Kentucky Derby on May

Justify became the 13th Triple Crown victor in horse racing history on Saturday, winning the 150th Belmont Stakes. Instead of thanking the horse's owner and the trainer, the very first thing he told NBC while being interviewed on horseback following the race, "First of all, I want to thank my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ".

After wearing mainly white silks in the previous two triple crown races, Smith on Saturday will don the colors - red with yellow stars - of the China Horse Club, part owner of the three-year-old colt.

Justify achieved immortality Saturday when he won the Belmont Stakes in Elmont, NY, just the 13th horse to clinch the American Triple Crown. He's the first Triple Crown victor to face that many rivals in the 1½-mile Belmont.

Justify is the first horse to win the Crown since American Pharaoh broke a decades-long drought in 2015. Of those 35, only 12 have won The Run for the Carnations to complete the feat.

The 37-year wait for the Triple Crown of horse racing, mercifully ended three years ago when wonderful American Pharoah crossed the finish line first at the 2015 Belmont Stakes, was at the same time exasperating, demoralizing, and borderline comical.

"To do what he did in such a short time is awesome", Smith said of Justify. The trainer of both Justify and American Pharaoh becomes just the second to ever win the Triple Crown twice - "Sunny Jim" Fitzsimmons also did it twice, with Gallant Fox and Omaha in the 1930s. "You can't find horses like this; they find you".

"Did you see him in the gate, he's standing so still", Smith said. The horse ran a great race. Executives from the investment firm oversee the breeding and horse ownership businesses.

He knew in February that the 3-year-old chestnut colt, who had yet to run a race, was something special.

"I get asked a lot how we move our horses around and why we give horses to certain trainers, " he said.

"A horse like this just kind of happens", Walden said, as he tried to describe the genesis of what Justify accomplished Saturday.

Seattle Slew's Triple Crown - four years after that of Secretariat, was swiftly followed by Affirmed's in 1978. Baffert said he felt confident, not stressed, during the run-up to the race.

"To me, Abel Tasman and Hopportunity, when they set the stage early, I thought this is going to be good, " Baffert said.

"It's just about getting the horse in a good, happy, comfortable place, wherever that may be", Smith said.

Before Justify won, 24/7 Wall St. has reviewed the 12 horses that have won the Triple Crown, according to Kentucky Derby's comprehensive list. It's the pinnacle of a career that has seen him win more than 5,400 races, including a record 26 in the Breeders' Cup, and now seven Triple Crown races. We saw another Triple Crown victor.

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