Winning the Triple Crown of Horse Racing is one of the most difficult accomplishments in all of sports. Only 13 horses have won the Triple Crown. Two, American Pharoah in 2015 and Justify in 2018, won the TC in the last decade. Most of the time no horses have the ability to win all three legs of the Triple Crown. This year four horses look capable of winning the TC. Keep reading about the four equines who could end up becoming thoroughbred racing’s fourteenth TC winner so you can keep planning your bets against their Triple Crown odds.
Will We Have a 2021 Triple Crown Winner?
2021 Kentucky Derby
- When: Saturday, May 1, 2021
- Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY
A horse must win the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes to win the Triple Crown
Before talking about the TC contenders, let’s discuss the Triple Crown. The races are restricted to three-year-old fillies and colts. Only a three-year-old thoroughbred can run in the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, and the Belmont.
The first race, and the most prestigious, is the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. The Derby isn’t the oldest among the three. That’s the Preakness.
But the Kentucky Derby is the most famous. Horses must run 1 ¼ miles. The 1 ¼ distance has become known as the classic distance.
If a horse wins the Derby, the equine runs two weeks later in the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico. The distance of the Preakness is 1 3/16 miles.
If the Derby winner also wins the Preakness, a Triple Crown will be on the line 3 weeks later at Belmont Park. The Belmont Stakes is a 1 ½ mile race.
All three Triple Crown races take place within a span of five weeks. Triple Crown winners must win three races at three different distances at three different tracks. The challenge is tremendous.
Four horses in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby have the potential to win the Triple Crown
Although tremendous, four horses in this year’s Derby field have the connections and talent to win the Triple Crown. Here are the four.
15-Rock Your World
The John Sadler trained and Santa Anita Derby winner loves to run and loves to win. Although he’s only raced three times, he has shown he’s as effective over dirt as he is over turf. His sire, Candy Ride, also made the switch from turf to dirt. Rock Your World should get a dream trip on the first Saturday in May. The lengthy colt has trained great at Churchill Downs.
Like Rock Your World, Essential Quality is also undefeated. The Godolphin-owned Tapit sired runner easily handled his opponents in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. He’s shown the ability to win near the lead or coming off. If he gets the right trip, the morning line chalk should be difficult to beat in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby.
The Todd Pletcher trained runner didn’t look good in the Grade 3 Sam F. Davis Stakes. But in his last couple of races, he’s dominated. The Florida Derby win was fantastic. Hall of fame and Preakness and Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Curlin sired. Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. must make a trip from post-position 1. If he does, Known Agenda could wear the roses on May 1.
The second-place Bluegrass Stakes finisher is the most talented three-year-old Chad Brown has ever trained. He’s even more talented than the 2017 Preakness winner Cloud Computing.
The problem? Highly Motivated may be in a year where three other horses, Known Agenda, Essential Quality, and Rock Your World, are better. Then again, he could improve off the second-place finish to Essential Quality, will be close to the pace like Rock Your World, and breaks from a more advantageous post than Known Agenda.
All four horses are bred to relish the 1 ½ mile Belmont Stakes’ distance. So distance won’t be an issue. If any of the four listed above win the Kentucky Derby, expect plenty of support to take the Preakness.
Will there be a Triple Crown winner?
The easy answer is no. Not because none of the four can’t win the Crown. It’s because all four are talented enough to win the TC.
Winning the Triple Crown requires both talent and a ton of luck. Part of the luck factor is competition. It will be tough for the Derby winner to beat its competitors in the next two legs. If all four horses we discuss in this blog run in all three TC legs, then, no, there won’t be a Triple Crown winner in 2021.
But if the Derby winner must face just one of its three peers in the Preakness, and maybe none of its three peers in the Belmont, then, yes, 2021 could see a Triple Crown winner.
Triple Crown Races: Betting News
- 2021 Kentucky Derby Betting Update & Kentucky Oaks Picks
- 2021 Kentucky Derby Update: Essential Quality & Rock Your World Clear-Cut Favorites
- 2021 Top Stakes Races to Bet On From April 30th to May 1st
- 2021 Kentucky Derby: Concert Tour Is Out of The Race
- 2021 Kentucky Derby: Essential Quality Clear Favorite to Win it All