Tacitus is shading Preakness winner War Of Will for favouritism for the Belmont Stakes.
Winning the Preakness Stakes has not been enough to make War Of Will favourite for the Belmont Stakes.
In fact, being the only colt to run in all three Triple Crown races really has not earned him the respect one would expect.
Well-rested Tacitus was made the slight favourite over the hard-working War Of Will in a Belmont Stakes that wraps up an unusual Triple Crown series.
Tacitus and War Of Will will start from barriers 10 and nine respectively on Saturday (Sunday AEST).
Trained by Boll Mott and to be ridden by Jose Ortiz, Tacitus was was the 9-5 favourtie after the draw with War Of Will at 2-1 for trainer Mark Casse and jockey Tyler Gaffalione.
“There’s a few things against him. ,” Casse said.
“Tacitus has the home-field advantage. He’s (War Of Will) the only guy to play in all three. I’m sure it has to take some toll on him.”
Tacitus has not raced since being elevated into third place in the Derby so he is going to be a lot fresher than War Of Will after the disqualification of Maximum Security.
The colt also likes racing in New York. He won the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct before the Kentucky Derby and he is the son of Tapit, who has sired three of the past five Belmont winners.
“I’m not worried about it at this moment,” Mott said of the distance. “I guess we’ve got to see it to believe it. It’s like the Derby, a test by fire, You really only know when it’s over if they’ll do it or not. I feel quite positive about it.”
Thus far this Triple Crown has been memorable for all the wrong reasons.
A year after Justify electrified the racing world by capturing the Triple Crown, thoroughbred’s biggest event for three-year-olds ended in chaos after Maximum Security was disqualified and Country House elevated to first in the Derby.
Within days, the owners of Maximum Security and Country House said they would skip the Preakness, meaning there would be no Triple Crown.