The American Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing is America’s answer to the Classics series run in England, Ireland and France. Like the Classics, the Triple Crown is a series featuring the talents of the finest 3 year old thoroughbreds in the country.
Resemblances between the Triple Crown and the Classics end with the age group targeted by each series and the quality of racehorses competing in these events. All Triple Crown races are open to both colts and fillies, races take place on dirt rather than turf courses, and race distances range between 1 mile 1 furlong and 1 mile 4 furlongs.
An American Heritage
The American Triple Crown starts in May each year with the running of the Kentucky Derby. Many racing enthusiasts regard this 1 mile 2 furlong race over the dirt track at Churchill Downs Racecourse to be the most important and prestigious race in the United States. The race ends with the winner being draped in a blanket of roses.
The next leg of the American Triple Crown is run within weeks of the Derby, as the finest 3 year old thoroughbreds in the United States head for Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore to contest the Preakness Stakes over a distance of 1 mile 1½ furlongs. The winner of the Kentucky Derby usually participates in this race, along with a number of other racehorses that competed in the first leg of the American Triple Crown.
The Belmont Stakes is the final leg of the American Triple Crown. Raced over a distance of 1 mile 4 furlongs, the Belmont Stakes attracts added interest when it features a racehorse with wins in both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. This race is sometimes referred to as the “Test of the Champion”, as the distance run provides a true test of the stamina of the competitors.
American Triple Crown Betting
The races that make up the American Triple Crown are amongst the most important sports betting events in the United States. Whilst parimutuel betting is the most popular betting option in the States, racing fans in other parts of the world can access a wide variety of fixed odds American Triple Crown betting markets, with antepost markets running months in advance of each race.
Triple Crown Champions
The winning of all three American Triple Crown races is regarded as the holy grail of American thoroughbred racing. During the history of the series only 11 racehorses have demonstrated the versatility, speed and stamina to win all three races. Affirmed was the last racehorse to achieve this feat in winning the Triple Crown in 1978.