The Triple Crown is the very pinnacle of thoroughbred racing in the United States. Comprising the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes this series is the hardest in the world to sweep. Many horses have tried and failed, but we’ll show you the winners and how to spot potential Triple Crown horses. Your Triple Crown betting guide begins here!
Best Triple Crown Betting Sites
Understanding form and knowing how to spot Triple Crown horses is only part of the battle. Once you are ready to nail your colors to the mast and get involved in Kentucky Derby online betting or wager in the Preakness, you will want to grab the best bonus and receive the fairest prices.
We’re here to help you with your Triple Crown betting. So, with your knowledge of the series increased check out these sites for the best Triple Crown odds:
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What is the Triple Crown?
The Triple Crown is a horse racing series that in effect was developed retrospectively. The Belmont Stakes (1867), Preakness (1873) and Kentucky Derby (1875) was already running for decades before the name and the trophy were made up.
With the term “Triple Crown” apparently originating in 1930, Sir Barton (1919) was back-dated for the title of winner. Since then twelve horses have won with Triple Crown betting now among the most competitive in the wagering world.
All of these races are for three-year-olds only. The order of the three races involved has changed over the years too. In 1969 the current brutal schedule of running all three races within five weeks was finalized, though 2020 is different!
The Triple Crown Today
Generally, the Derby is run on the first Saturday in May over 1¼ miles at Churchill Downs in Louisville. The Preakness (1 3⁄16 miles) comes within two weeks at Pimlico, Maryland and finally just three weeks down the line the Belmont Stakes horses need to show their grit over 1½ miles at Belmont Park in New York.
Prize money in a given year for the Triple Crown races is huge. It ranges from $2 million for the Preakness and Belmont to $3 million in the Derby.
While Triple Crown betting is hot, winners are rare but they do tend to come in bursts. The last Triple Crown winner was Justify in 2018 for trainer Bob Baffert, just three years after the same handler won the series with the brilliant American Pharoah.
For 25 years after Citation’s 1948 success, there were no Triple Crown winners. Between 1973 and 1978 however, Secretariat, Seattle Slew and Affirmed all added their names to the Hall of Fame.
Knowing the history of the race is one thing, but Triple Crown betting is what we’re interested in. The difference between Kentucky Derby horses and those running in the Belmont can be vast so we’re here to help you understand what is needed in all Triple Crown races.
Triple Crown Betting Strategy
Firstly, it’s important to mention when putting you on the right Triple Crown betting track that each race is different.
Not all owners, breeders and trainers go for all three races. A horse may win the Derby then be ruled out of the Preakness, hence no Triple Crown winner. Understanding each individual race therefore is key to knowing if a horse is capable of winning the lot.
How to Pick a Winner
Whether you think you’ve found the next Triple Crown winner or are just looking to find the champ in a specific race, you must understand the race conditions.
In a normal year, horses are challenged to win races on the Road to the Kentucky Derby in springtime. Events such as the Florida Derby, Santa Anita Derby and Blue Grass Stakes are key. Winning these races will get horses into the Derby but assessing the different lines of form can be tough.
Look at the form for each race individually. Good prep runs are required for the Derby, Preakness Stakes horses may need to have Derby form while those running in the Belmont often need to be bred for 1½ miles, so check out their lineage.
Triple Crown betting is essentially based on all of these factors, odds-compilers knowing that it takes so much versatility to win them all.
Form with Substance over Fast Times
In 2020 things are a little different of course with a shortened Belmont Stakes already gone. So, while the form of that race is important other Grade I races come under scrutiny ahead of the Derby.
Events such as the Travers Stakes or the Haskell Invitational now become key trials. Triple Crown betting in fact will almost certainly change plenty after the results of these events are known.
Concentrating on this form, rather than being hung up workout times or even race winning times is crucial. Beating the right horses and being trained by the right people is the most important thing. Bob Baffert and Chad Brown come to mind here but there are undoubtedly others who are capable. Read more about the most famous Kentucky Derby Trainers.
Triple Crown betting wise, with top preps being the order of the day, those at the top of the market are the most likely to win the Kentucky Derby. This doesn’t mean simply backing the favorite, but definitely those with confirmed Grade I form.
In a September 5 Derby, sophomores who are battle-hardened at the top level should hold an advantage.
All that said while past form is our best guide, we should always remember we’re wagering on a future event. Consider therefore likely improvement, something bettors singularly fail to do on a regular basis. The lighter racer, the more likely they are to find more ability on the big day.
Belmont Stakes online betting was a non-event in 2020 with the strong favorite having little competition, however things are bound to change in the fall with new challengers reaching their peak just in time.
Consider horses who were initially on the Triple Crown trail, only to get injured at the wrong time. They could be back for the Derby and the Preakness and will be running fresh, something that could be the key to peak performance.
All Triple Crown Winners
Dating back more than 100 years there have only ever been 13 Triple Crown winners. The versatility, class and endurance needed to win three Grade I races as a sophomore in double-quick time cannot be underestimated.
Taking down the Kentucky Derby, the Belmont and the Preakness remains one of the toughest tasks in horse racing but these special few have managed the feat:
|1919||Sir Barton||Johnny Loftus||H. Guy Bedwell|
|1930||Gallant Fox||Earl Sande||Jim Fitzsimmons|
|1935||Omaha||Willie Saunders||Jim Fitzsimmons|
|1937||War Admiral||Charles Kurtsinger||George Conway|
|1941||Whirlaway||Eddie Arcaro||Ben A. Jones|
|1943||Count Fleet||Johnny Longden||Don Cameron|
|1946||Assault||Warren Mehrtens||Max Hirsch|
|1948||Citation||Eddie Arcaro||Horace A. Jones|
|1973||Secretariat||Ron Turcotte||Lucien Laurin|
|1977||Seattle Slew||Jean Cruguet||William H. Turner, Jr.|
|1978||Affirmed||Steve Cauthen||Laz Barrera|
|2015||American Pharoah||Victor Espinoza||Bob Baffert|
|2018||Justify||Mike Smith||Bob Baffert|
Triple Crown Records
Comparing top thoroughbreds from different generations is always difficult. Our last Triple Crown winner Justify was undoubtedly good, but was he one of the all-time greats? The answer is “probably not”.
Secretariat is in fact the one credited with being the greatest of all time, and we’re not going to argue. The 1973 champion holds the record for the fastest time in all three events.
What would his Triple Crown odds be if he were racing today? We suggest they’d be pretty prohibitive.
One thing Justify’s wins were famous for was producing the oldest jockey to win the series, Mike Smith at 52. Compare that to Steve Cauthen (Affirmed, 1978) who was the youngest at 18 and you see anything is possible!
Neither of those great riders won the Triple Crown more than once however. The only jockey to do so was Eddie Arcaro in 1941 and 1948 aboard Whirlaway and Citation respectively.
Trainers too have had a hard time. Since Jim Fitzsimmons won the second and third Triple Crown titles in 1930 and 1935, nobody had managed the feat until recently when Bob Baffert cemented his place in racing folklore.
Baffert trained American Pharoah, a great Derby winner who was heavily favored in the Preakness Stakes online betting when landing that race before he proved his stamina as one of the finest Belmont Stakes winners ever.
The California-based man followed up with Justify in 2018 to become only the second trainer to win two Triple Crowns.
Whatever horse, jockey and trainer combo comes up with the next Triple Crown champion will be lauded. If you’re trying to bet the next winner though, reach for the stars and look for a potential Secretariat – the best Triple Crown winner of all time.