Triple Crown victor Justify partially owned by George Soros's company

Belmont Stakes 2018: Betting odds, picks, favorites

Though Justify won the 150th running of the Belmont Stakes this weekend, the 13th Triple Crown champion in horse racing history was immediately met with controversy.

Restoring Hope, also trained by Baffert, ran interference for the champion while traveling second and deterring any threats by forcing them to go extremely wide.

"It was meant to be", Baffert said. On one side of this deal were two of the horse's owners - WinStar and China Horse Club - along with SF Racing, a group backed by George Soros, the billionaire owner and philanthropist, that sold its ownership share of Justify but still owns some of the horse's breeding rights.

Jockey Florent Geroux (center in pink silks) is seen leaving the gate at the Belmont Stakes, with victor Justify on the far left.

Mike Repole, the Queens native and co-owner of fourth-place Vino Rosso and last-place Noble Indy, was hoping stewards would question the "reckless riding" of Restoring Hope jockey Florent Geroux after he raced out of the gates to run behind and just outside of Justify.

While Justify and Mike Smith, his Hall of Fame rider, smoothly accelerated after breaking from the rail to seize the early lead, Geroux rode vigorously to hustle Restoring Hope toward the front. "He's now become a household name and I'm looking forward to his next race as much as you guys are", he said.

"I have no earthly idea what Florent was thinking or what his race strategy was", he told the Post in an email.

'Had I known better, the first eighth of a mile I would have thought it was a quarter-horse race, not the mile-and-a-half Belmont. "I will never know". Justify is the 13 Triple Crown victor, and only the second to win the all three American Classics - Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes - in the past 40 years (American Pharoah, 2015). He won his first three races by a combined 19 lengths, making trainer Bob Baffert a believer.

Doug Bredar, the agent for Geroux, said he has no comment and Geroux has no comment.

Despite the allegations, New York Gaming Commission steward Steve Lewandowski told the Daily Racing Form that they don't plan to speak to Geroux about the race. "His only chance was to be up near the lead in the first wave because he's like a one-dimensional horse".

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