Will Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner California Chrome win Saturday’s Belmont Stakes (G1) and become the 12th horse in history to garner the elusive Triple Crown? We’ll know the answer Saturday evening at the conclusion of the race scheduled to run at 6:52 p.m. EDT. Until then, race fans will continue to analyze history and speculate as to California Chrome’s chances to break a 36-year drought.
The 1970s saw three Triple Crown winners—Secretariat in 1973, Seattle Slew in 1977 and Affirmed in 1978. Some of the connections of these three winners recently participated in a national conference call and provided their opinions of California Chrome’s chances to become the next Triple Crown winner.
In 1973 Secretariat’s Triple Crown win ended a 25-year drought that saw seven failed attempts before him. His rider, Ron Turcotte, said of California Chrome’s chances, “I'd love to see the horse win. I really love the horse. I love the way he's training, and I really think he's going to win the Triple Crown. I'd just love to see him win it.”
Secretariat’s 92-year-old owner Penny Chenery thinks so much of California Chrome’s Triple Crown winning possibility that she’s making plans to attend the June 7 event.
“I wasn't going to go, because I'm getting up in years, but I just—if this horse can win the Triple Crown, I want to be there,” said Chenery.