Grade 1 Belmont Stakes Futility for Exaggerator
Nyqusit could not be bothered to appear and favourite Exaggerator seemed to be out of gas in the Grade 1 2016 Belmont Stakes at 1 ½ miles (2400 k.), so thoroughbred racing in America can go to sleep, not only without a Triple Crown winner, but without even a horse to capture two of the three legs.
It was an exciting race, to say the least, at New York’s Belmont Park racecourse, won by Creator in a photo over Destin, two horses that never attracted much backing.
Trainer Steve Asmussen can now add the Belmont to his resume alongside the recent announcement that he has been selected to the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. Asmussen had been under a cloud since 2014 over allegations by PETA of animal abuse, allegations of which he was later exonerated when the charges proved baseless.
Creator’s stablemate Gettysburg set a strong pace that some credited for making Creator’s victory possible.
The Japanese horse Lani, winner of the UAE Derby in March, took third.
Preakness Stakes winner Exaggerator, that ran second in the Kentucky Derby, was run wide throughout the race, went into the stretch in fourth position and looked poised to produce a strong burst, faded to 11th out of 13 at the end.