Could Bob Baffert Target Further Triple Crown Success At The Belmont Stakes
  • Matthew Daniel
  • May 29, 2023

Could Bob Baffert Target Further Triple Crown Success At The Belmont Stakes?

It’s always challenging to keep Bob Baffert out of the headlines in the United States, and he made headlines once against following the Preakness Stakes. A difficult day at Pimlico for the Hall of Famer began on the undercard with Havnameltdown being euthanized on-track in one of the earlier races. 

But, triumph would follow later in the day as National Treasure would deliver a record-breaking eighth victory in the race. 

However, Baffert’s name was mentioned for many of the wrong reasons on social media throughout the day, with few offering support to the trainer that has been banned from the previous two editions of the Kentucky Derby following Medina Spirit’s disqualification. 

But, Baffert will likely target further Triple Crown success next month, as at least three of his runners could be pointed toward the Belmont Stakes in New York. You can check his odds here: 

Baffert’s Belmont Stakes Record

Interestingly, the Belmont Stakes sees Baffert boast his worst record of the three Triple Crown races. The Hall of Famer hasn’t landed victory in the race since Justify completed his Triple Crown bid back in 2018. Overall, that was his third victory in the race. 

His most popular winner came back in 2015, with American Pharoah completing the Triple Crown at Belmont Park. Meanwhile, Point Given was one of the standout recent winners of the famous race, as he landed a dominant success by over 12 lengths in one of the fastest editions of the Belmont Stakes. 

Arabian Lion

One of the most interesting Baffert runners that could be pointed toward the Belmont Stakes is Arabian Lion. The son of Justify finally clicked into form on the Preakness undercard, as he registered a first success in stakes company under the experienced jockey John Velazquez. The three-year-old led from wire-to-wire over the 1 1/16 mile distance, and eventually finished over four lengths clear of Tapit’s Conquest in a race for horses aged three. 

Not for the first time, Arabian Lion was sent off as the clear favorite, but this time, he finally came through to take the win. Baffert’s runner bypassed the Preakness after finishing second in the G3 Lexington and fourth in the G3 Robert B Lewis. But, there is certainly a sense that he showed more at Pimlico than he has on previous career starts.

National Treasure

Given Arabian Lion’s performance on the undercard, we wouldn’t be surprised to see him go off at a shorter price than National Treasure of the Belmont Stakes in early June. However, it’s unlikely that the Baffert three-year-old will go as unnoticed in the betting at he did at Pimlico. National Treasure was excellent in the Preakness Stakes, as he battled hard to see off Blazing Sevens in the final stretch to land success in the middle jewel of the Triple Crown. 

That was a return to form for the three-year-old, who had previously finished fourth in the G1 Santa Anita Derby and third in the G3 Sham. There’s little doubt that he remains a very talented runner from the Baffert yard, having finished third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, and second behind Cave Rock in the G1 American Pharoah last year. 


The final Baffert runner that is under consideration for a potential run in the Belmont Stakes is Reincarnate. The son of Good Magic competed in the Kentucky Derby, having moved from the Baffert yard to Tim Yakteen. 

However, he failed to get involved in the race at Churchill Downs, eventually finishing back in 13th after weakening in the closing staged. The three-year-old still has some graded form in the book, having beat National Treasure in the G3 Sham back in January. However, since then, he has finished third in both the G2 Rebel Stakes and G1 Arkansas Derby. The betting will highlight that he is the likely outsider of the Baffert trio at Belmont Park. 


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