No Triple Crown winner as California Chrome falters at Belmont

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Belmont, NY, United States (4E Sports) – There will be no Triple Crown winner this year after California Chrome finished in a dead heat for fourth behind Tonalist in the Belmont Stakes Saturday at Belmont Park.

California Chrome, which won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness in impressive fashion, was vying to become horse racing’s first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978.

Tonalist, ridden by Joel Rosario, edged longshot Commissioner in the 1 ½-mile race while Medal Count placed third.

Looking to become the first Triple Crown winner since 1978, California Chrome ran fourth in a dead heat with Wicked Strong.

California Chrome broke cleanly and sat fourth on the inside up the back stretch. Blocked three wide into the turn, jockey Victory Espinoza pulled the Triple Crown hopeful wide.

“Today, he was a little bit flat down the lane,” Espinoza said. “When I moved out, he just didn’t have it.”

California Chrome became the 13th horse since 1978 to come away without victory after winning the Derby and Preakness. I’ll Have Another won the first two jewels but did not compete in the third race in 2012 due to injury.

Espinoza, for his part, missed out on a Triple Crown for the second time. In 2002, he pulled into the Belmont aboard the Derby and Preakness winner War Emblem, but the colt stumbled at the start and finished eighth at Belmont.

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