California Chrome was the 12th horse since Affirmed in 1978 to make a bid for horse racing’s Triple Crown at Belmont after winning the first two legs. It did not work out.
And after a tough race, owner Steve Coburn wanted to let NBC know just how angry he was at pretty much everyone. Coburn was specifically mad at horses, like Belmont Stakes winner Tonalist, who did not race in the Kentucky Derby or Preakness Stakes.
“If you can’t make enough points to come in the Kentucky Derby, you can’t run in other two races,” Coburn snapped at NBC’s interviewer. “This is a coward’s way out.”
Sure, of course the horses which only ran in one, or even none, of the first two legs are fresher, but that’s what makes the feat so impressive. Apparently, California Chrome did not have what it took to win against fresher horses, like Affirmed, Seattle Slew, Secretariat and so on.
Chrome was boxed in on the rail down the backstretch, and after getting tucked in behind Commissioner, tried to move to the outside. But the horse didn’t have what it took to close down the homestretch from the outside and eventually came up with a photo finish for fourth.
To make Coburn’s rant even worse, the owner snapped at his wife after the NBC interview when she tried to calm him down. You can see her start to mouth the words, “I know,” before she shouts her down.
— Joey Boots (@JoeyBoots) June 7, 2014
Not a pretty way to end an exciting run through the Triple Crown schedule.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports. It’ll be OK, Steve, you’re still really really rich.