Sports

Mo Donegal wins 2022 Belmont Stakes

Former Triple Crown legend Todd Pletcher had a simple Saturday trick on jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. in front of the Belmont Stakes.

“Be patient,” Pletcher said. “I think you have a final share of every horse in the race.”

In some cases, the minority is Mo.

Mo Donegal left home and took Nest full to win the Belmont Stakes, giving Pletcher a 1-2 finish with his sixth Triple Crown victory, plus four on the way out of New York City.

“To be honest with you, we were a little bit confident to compete today,” said Donegal Racing boss and owner Jerry Crawford. “When he turned around at home, I was like, I forgot about it. I know Todd thought he could have run the last couple of miles, and he certainly did.”

Donegal circled the 1 1/2-mile rail in 2 minutes, 28.28 seconds, ahead of Nest and Skippylongstocking. Pletcher, who lives in Long Island, is adding another Belmont title following victories with the Rags to Riches in 2007, Palace Malice in 2013 and Tapwrit in 2017.

Mo Donegal conquered the open field, of eight horses without a clear lover – We the People, the mud beast, opened at 2 to 1 am in the rainy season but reached 7 to 2 during the race when the rain was removed.

Mo Donegal entered the favorite betting gate at 5 to 2. We the People led a lot of competition, but Mo Donegal and Ortiz took the lead out of the final.

The three-year-old donkey paid $ 7.20, $ 3.80 and $ 3. Nest – who almost finished second for Pletcher to win Belmont after the Rags to Riches – paid $ 5.30 and $ 4.10, and Skippylongstocking returned $ 5.60 for the show.

Rich Strike, amazing Kentucky Derby winner on the 80-to-1 hurdles, he was sixth after owner Rick Dawson and coach Eric Reed pulled him out of preakness with an eye on Belmont. Rich Strike was the first healthy Derby winner to jump on Pimlico since 1985.

Reed said the team encouraged jockey Sonny Leon to try to push Rich Strike out, but the horse tried to get back inside – where he paid late on the 19th horse to win at Churchill Downs.

“I think we just made a smart mistake,” Reed said.

Like the Rich Strike, Mo Donegal was in the back of the pack at Derby, but the donkey didn’t have enough push at Churchill Downs. He won on Saturday, winning 154th in the $ 1.5 million race.

For the fourth year in a row the Triple Crown race was won by three different horses, the first in the sport from 1926-29.

The contest featured a return to Belmont’s stand alone after the 2020 Stakes were closed to the public due to the epidemic and the 2021 event had only 11,238 spectators due to anti-virus.

The possibility was reopened, this time at 50,000, due to overcrowding from a newly built stadium near the New York Islanders NHL. However, fans filled the streets of Long Island Rail Road and breathed a sigh of relief at the 117-year-old with floral prints, pastel suits and an unmistakable musk of alcohol and cigarettes.

The stadiums were not as crowded as the venues for the 120,139 fans in 2004. It came as no surprise, given the turbulent weather and the lack of Triple Crown contender.

The field was small, too. No horse has ridden three Triple Crown legs this year, raising concerns that three races in five weeks could be too tight for horses to be healthy.

Winner Preakness Early Voting was suspended, possibly in preparation for the $ 1.25 million Travers Stakes at the Saratoga Race Course on Aug. 27. Epicenter, winner of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, also jumped.

In the $ 500,000 three-year-old Acorn, Matareya won up to a 6 1/4 victory. Favorite Echo Zulu wrote in a post on the railway veterinarian’s advice.

Trained by Brad Cox and ridden by Flavien Prat, Matarea ($ 2.60) ran a distance of 1: 35.77, with a fifth victory in the first eight years.

The highly acclaimed airplane slowly landed, overcoming the first car crash and traveling the six-mile long-awaited overnight ride on the Hill ‘N’ Dale Metropolitan Mile for $ 1 million.

The win left the 4-year-old Tapit unbeaten in four games. This was the first one that did not win with a two-digit margin.

Flightline ($ 2.90) also rode with Prat and was coached by John Sadler.

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