Triple Crown Craziness


Melanie Kibler


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UNITED STATES – Throughout the United States, people gather around television screens and computers on three very special days to watch groups of horses race each other.  These races are all part of the Triple Crown.

The Triple Crown is made up of the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes and a horse can only win by coming in first in all three races.  However, it is rare for a horse to win all three races, so there have only been thirteen Triple Crown winners since the beginning in 1875 (Encyclopedia Britannica).  

The two most recent Triple Crown winners were Justify (2018) and American Pharoah (2015).  But before them the last Triple Crown winner was Affirmed in 1978.

While the Triple Crown races themselves are very important, this year there were many things that were monumental besides just the winning horse.  It has definitely been a surprising year for horse racing.

At the Kentucky Derby, Maximum Security made history by being the first horse ever in 145 years to be disqualified.  Near the turn at the top of the stretch Maximum Security cut to his right, impeding the paths of War of Will and Long Range Toddy, which in turn messed up Country Horse (Washington Post).

Also at the Kentucky Derby, there was another horse who tripped coming out of the gait.  While this is less extreme than being disqualified, it is a bummer for the horse because that could have prevented it from coming in first, second, or third.

The Preakness Stakes also had its fair share of craziness.  Right as Bodexpress left the gait, he bucked off his jockey and ran the rest of the race.  This isn’t the first time that this has happened, but it is still definitely strange.

Usually the horse will stop running once as it realizes that its jockey is no longer on, but Bodexpress  just kept on going. He wanted to win, but unfortunately he was too far away from the fence so he had a longer distance to run.

Horse wranglers tried to catch up to him and stop him, but once they got close the horse moved into the middle of the pack.  This prevented the wranglers from stopping him, as they couldn’t interfere with the race.

After everything that has happened in these two races, it makes one wonder: what will happen in the Belmont Stakes?  Statistically, something is going to go wrong, but we will have to wait until the third race of the Triple Crown to find out what it will be.