By Jim Freer
Justify led at every call and won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, in the process taking thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown for 3-year-olds.
Gronkowski finished second by 1 3/4 lengths in the ten-horse field, after rallying from last place midway in the race at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y.
Hofburg finished third, followed by Vino Rosso.
Justify, a son of Scat Daddy, won the 1 1/2 mile Belmont in 2:28.18 on the track listed as fast,Mike Smith rode Justify for trainer Bob Baffert.
Justify is unbeaten in six career starts–including this year’s Kentucky Derby and Preakness. Those are the first two races in the Triple Crown which has been recognized as a series since 1919.
Justify is the 13th Triple Crown winner.