A Belmont wager? You bet!
ELMONT, N.Y. - Dale Romans, who trains Shackleford, surprise winner of the Preakness, watched his first Classic winner work five furlongs in a shade over a minute last Saturday at Belmont Park, pronounced the colt ready for the Triple Crown finale and said: "It's fun to get a rivalry started [with Animal Kingdom]. It's good for racing."On Sunday morning, a van carrying Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom from the bucolic Fair Hill training center in Maryland rolled through the stable gate at Belmont. "We're looking forward to a rematch," said David Rock, trainer Graham Motion's assistant, "and there are some other real horses in the race as well."
Indeed, a true rivalry that blossoms during the Triple Crown is compelling and good for racing but they are almost as rare as Triple Crown winners.
The Belmont's great unknown -- 12 furlongs run over a unique racetrack, the world's longest dirt course -- levels the playing field.
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