Union Rags edged Paynter in a photo finish to win the 144th running of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday.
After I’ll Have Another was scratched from the race ending his Triple Crown bid, Union Rags (5/2) went off as the co-favorite in the race with Dullahan, who finished a disappointing seventh.
The Bob Baffert trained Paynter led most of the race before losing the lead as he got clipped by a nose at the finish line. It marks three straight second place finishes in Triple Crown races for Baffert, who saw Bodemesiter just miss against I’ll Have Another in the both Kentucky Derby and Prekness Stakes.
Trainer Michael Matz decided to hold Union Rags out of the Preakness Stakes and replace Julien Leparoux with John Velazquez as the jockey for the Belmont. The move paid dividends as Velazquez is the most experienced jockey at Belmont. He rode Union Rags to victory in 2:30:42.
ORDER OF FINISH
1. Union Rags
4. Street Life
5. Five Sixteen
6. Unstoppable U
8. My Adonis
9. Ravelo’s Boy
11. Guyana Star Dweej
3 Union Rags 7.50 4.20 3.40
9 Paynter 5.10 3.90
4 Atigun 10.60
$1 DAILY DOUBLE Paid: $24.20 4-3
$1 EXACTA Paid: $15.70 3-9
$1 PICK 3 Paid: $96.00 6-4-3
$1 PICK 4 Paid: $641.50 1-6-4-3
$1 PICK 6 Paid: $106.00 6-7-1-6-4-3
$1 SUPERFECTA Paid: $953.00 3-9-4-1
$1 TRIFECTA Paid: $248.00 3-9-4