On Saturday, the young filly Rags to Riches was crowned winner of the Belmont Stakes in front of a crowd of 46,870, becoming the first filly in 102 years to win the race. The horse to beat was Curlin, who had won this year’s Preakness, but Rags to Riches won by a head. The win was especially exciting to trainer Todd Pletcher who broke a losing streak of 0-28 and jockey John Velazquez who was 0-20.

Curlin’s trainer, Steve Asmussen was a gracious loser, especially since for the third year in a row, no horse was up for the Triple Crown title. Curlin had beat rival Street Sense by a head in his winning race three weeks ago. However, this race was all about Rags who won 2:28.74, four seconds behind Secretariat, who holds the track record, but it was still enough to get the job done. Rags to Riches was a 4-1 second choice and returned $10.60, $4.40, and $3.20, earning $600,000 and raising her total worth to $1,292,528 for her owners, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith. Curlin and rider Robby Albarado paid $3.00 and $2.30. The third place winner, Tiago, returned $3.70.

The Belmont Stakes is the longest race of the Triple Crown races at 1 ½ miles. At the start, Rags to Riches stumbled out of Gate 7, which could have cost her the win, but she persevered. Having been purchased last September at a yearling sale in Keeneland, for $1.9 million, she still has a long, promising career ahead of her.

For related articles visit

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,279915,00.html and http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070610/SPORTS07/706100349/1004/SPORTS.


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