But given the poor conditions of the first two races, combined with the unique length of the Belmont, there are lots of challengers to block Justify's run at history. The crowd has been capped at 90,000. Secretariat ended the longest previous Triple Crown drought of 25 years in 1973 in winning the Belmont by an astonishing 31 lengths.
Superior: Justify carries the China Horse Club silks to victory in the Belmont Stakes to complete the Triple Crown. He's 5-for-5 in a career that did not begin until February 18 of this year. "We've been able to brand something very special in what we've accomplished". "I just won the Triple Crown, man".
Being that valuable might make it hard for the horse to get back on the track again, though ownership seemed optimistic after the win that it was possible. A late surge, however, ensured a second-place finish, and that was not lost on Twitter, who broke out the jokes.
Baffert admits no other horse has compared to American Pharoah - his 2015 Triple Crown victor.
Justify's stunning rise puts him in the pantheon of great horses.
The season-ending Breeders' Cup world championships are in Louisville on November 2-3. But jockeys say Smith's age is actually an advantage.
Justify dominated the Derby last month but won the Preakness in a closer race two weeks later.
"To become just the 13th victor of the Triple Crown is fantastic and even more special is the fact that he is only the second Triple Crown victor to be bought at public auction after Seattle Slew in 1977".
This is the second Triple Crown win for legendary horse trainer Bob Baffert.
Justify defied all the odds on his way to achieving Triple Crown immortality. "He's now become a household name, and I'm looking forward to his next race just as much as you guys are". "He's sent from heaven".
"I was so happy for him when he won", said Smith.
Bob Baffert is hoping to snag his second Triple Crown in the span of just three years with Justify.
Among the other horses scheduled to compete in the Belmont is Bravazo, who challenged Justify in the Preakness and was beaten by a half-length. Vino Rosso made the most serious move to get within a length but never threatened.
"My thought turning for home was that he had a shot to get him if Justify was vulnerable at a mile and a half", said Gronkowski's trainer, Chad Brown, who took over the care of Phoenix Thoroughbreds' colt from Jeremy Noseda in May. "This horse, I'm sure there was millions of people screaming at their TV wanting to see it done".
Gronkowski, named for and partly owned by New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, returned $13.80 and $7 in his US debut after arriving from England.
Trainer Todd Pletcher also has two horses in the field - 8-1 Vino Rosso and 30-1 Noble Indy.