Kentucky Derby champ I’ll Have Another’s owners were hoping to have another victory this weekend—but that won’t happen. The thoroughbred has been scrapped from Saturday’s Belmont Stakes, after trainer Doug O’Neill announced the horse was suffering from tendonitis. O’Neill said the horse may have overextended during training and injured one of his Achilles tendons.
If the horse had won, he would have been the first Triple Crown winner in 34 years, and the 12th horse in the title’s 137-year history. The 3-year-old colt cinched the Kentucky Derby and Baltimore’s Preakness Stakes this May and was favored at Belmont.
The Belmont Stakes features a grueling 1.5 mile track, nearly 20 percent longer than the Kentucky Derby, and a length not many 3-year-old horses have the stamina for. “I’m bummed we’re not participating,” said O’Neill, who along with owners and jockey Mario Gutierrez could have raked in large sums of cash with a Triple Crown. “Whoever wins will be a special horse.”