American Pharaoh has officially joined racehorse royalty alongside Sir Barton, Secretariat and Affirmed by becoming the first Triple Crown winner since 1978 at the 147th Belmont Stakes on Saturday.
Ridden by Victor Espinoza, Pharaoh pulled to the front from the fifth position at the very beginning of the race, taking first place easily while Frosted finished second and Keen Ice in third.
American Pharaoh’s Triple Crown win makes him only the 12th horse to have achieved the honour. And perhaps he is lucky number thirteen, seeing as he was the 13th horse in the last thirty years to qualify for the Triple Crown but the only one to succeed at the Belmont.
Owned by Ahmed Zayat of Zayat Stables, American Pharaoh is now set to stand at stud at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud in Kentucky for an undisclosed price. Along with this, Zayat has announced that American Pharaoh will now likely retire at the end of the year. A good way to end a career that had already racked up $3.7 million before the Belmont purse which is upwards of $800,000.
American Pharaoh’s win comes after days of doubts surrounding whether or not the three year old would succeed when going up against fresher horses at Belmont which is known to be the true test of champions in the horse racing world. However, American Pharaoh lived up to his own greatness and succeeded in becoming the first Triple Crown winner of the millennium. Despite his impending retirement, the racing world will eagerly await to see the foals that he produces and their careers.