Ruler On Ice, with jockey Jose Valdivia Jr., sprints to to the finish line ahead of Stay Thirsty to win the Belmont Stakes.
NEW YORK (AP) — Ruler On Ice posted a huge upset in the Belmont Stakes, taking the lead from Preakness Stakes winner Shackleford in the straight and winning the final leg of the Triple Crown.
Shackleford led from the start on Saturday, but when the field of 12 turned for home in the 1½-mile (2,400-meter) Belmont, 24-1 long shot Ruler on Ice took over under Jose Valdivia Jr., and splashed home first, three-quarters of a length ahead of Stay Thirsty.
The much-hyped rubber match between Shackleford and Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom never materialized. Shackleford finished fifth, while Animal Kingdom got off to a terrible start, never got into contention and finished sixth. Jockey John Velazquez nearly fell off when Animal Kingdom collided with Monzon just after the start.
Ruler On Ice, trained by Kelly Breen, did not run in the first two legs of the Triple Crown.