With Tiz the Law‘s impressive performance in the Belmont Stakes yesterday, I am beginning to think that we may have the 14th Triple Crown champion on our hands. With all the injuries to horses like Charlatan, Nadal and Maxfield, who’s going to beat him now?
And this year’s Triple Crown won’t be the grueling three race juggernaut in a 5 week span like it was in the past. The schedule now provides plenty of time to rest between each crown jewel event.
If Tiz the Law doesn’t race again between now and the Kentucky Derby on September 5th, he will have a 11 week layoff. He looked sharp in the Belmont Stakes after a 12 week layoff. He produced a really nice final 3-furlong time which I calculated to be 36.35 seconds and 100 Beyer Speed Figure.
Tiz the Law has demonstrated that he has the tactical speed necessary to win in a large field like the Kentucky Derby. The only thing that he will be up against is the unknown late bloomer that could emerge this fall. I’ll take my chances that Tiz the Law gets even faster by Derby time.
Tiz the Law’s trainer Barclay Tagg came close to winning a Triple Crown with Funny Cide in 2003 as he won the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and came in third in the Belmont Stakes that year.
And history appears to be on Tiz the Law’s side. Triple Crown champions come in groups of three to four in a 5 to 7 year span:
- 1930 Gallant Fox, 1935 Omaha, 1937 War Admiral
- 1941 Whirlaway, 1943 Count Fleet, 1946 Assault, 1948 Citation
- 1973 Secretariat, 1977 Seattle Slew, 1978 Affirmed
- 2015 American Pharoah, 2018 Justify, ?
Looking at these patterns, we should get another Triple Crown champion this year or 2022 as the third Triple Crown Champion came five years or seven years after the first in the series.
2020 has been a weird year due to the Coronavirus pandemic, so it would only be fitting to have a Triple Crown champion with a juggled order of Triple Crown events. But it wouldn’t be the first time this happened as Gallant Fox became the 2nd Triple Crown champion in 1930 with his Preakness Stakes win being the first leg of the Triple Crown.
Overall, having another Triple Crown threat to watch this fall would help make this woeful year a more palatable. I sincerely hope it happens and I don’t think there should be an asterisk next to Tiz the Law’s name if he pulls off the feat. It’s wouldn’t be his fault that track owners postponed races. And with the way he ran yesterday, I think he would have won the Belmont Stakes at the traditional 12 furlong distance.