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We Now Have a Triple Crown Contender

Justify wins Preakness, will try to complete feat June 9
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 19, 2018 6:27 PM CDT

(Newser) – Justify emerged from the fog and sloshed his way to another victory, holding off several hard-charging challengers to win the Preakness on Saturday and keep alive the chance for trainer Bob Baffert's second Triple Crown champion in four years. On a sloppy track similar to the conditions in the Kentucky Derby, Justify improved to 5-0 and will go to the Belmont Stakes in New York on June 9 looking to do the same thing American Pharoah did for Baffert in 2015. Justify showed no ill effects from a bruised heel on his left hind foot that was discovered in the aftermath of the Derby, an injury Baffert insisted would not be a problem, per the AP.

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Justify and Good Magic went to the lead early and traded first back and forth throughout the 1-3/16-mile race. Bravazo edged long-shot Tenfold for second, and Good Magic was fourth. "They had their own private match race," Baffert said. "He's just a great horse to handle all that pressure and keep on running." Baffert tied veteran D. Wayne Lukas' record with his 14th victory in a Triple Crown race and matched 19th-century trainer R.W. Walden with his seventh Preakness title. Baffert also remained undefeated with Derby winners in the Preakness following Silver Charm, Real Quiet, War Emblem, and American Pharoah.

(Read more Triple Crown stories.)

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