Through the Eyes & Lens of Holly M. Smith: Justify Makes Public Appearance at Churchill Downs as Triple Crown Winner

Here is a look at Justify, in his first public appearance at Churchill Downs since winning the Belmont S
takes and becoming the 13th Triple Crown winner and the second undefeated Triple Crown winner, along with the great, late Seattle Slew.

Tonight’s view, through the eyes of our own Holly M. Smith, one of the finest equine photographers of all time:

(The great and newest Triple Crown winner, Justify, at Churchill Downs on Saturday night / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

(Justify gets to greet some of his fans at Churchill Downs / Photo by Holly  M. Smith)

(The great Justify in black & white / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

(Well Defined) has a ton of natural talent and I was going to take advantage of that today,” Morales explained. “I wasn’t too worried about where I was going to be because we were really lucky with the draw position on the outside, so I figured I was going to ride a cool race.

“The horse is naturally fast and has a super-long stride, so I was going to come out running, but if somebody wanted to take the lead, I was OK with that,” Morales said. No one did, and he stretched the lead to three lengths from Knicks Go up the backstretch.

“All I wanted to do was ride a cool and collected race and keep my horse running,” Morales said. “I didn’t feel like I was going that fast at all, and my horse was going as comfortable as he possible could.

“I knew he was doing it relaxed and very much on his own. I had a lot of horse going into the second turn, so I figured I was going to ask him a little more and not wait for them to get me. If they were going to catch me, they were really going to have to come running.”

PABLO MORALES, RIDER OF THE WINNER WELL DEFINED
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

    Full Bio >

More From Gene McLean