Early Triple Crown Nominees Number 369

Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable’s divisional champion and TDN Rising StarForte (Violence) leads a total of 369 3-year-olds eligible to compete in this year’s Triple Crown series after the early nomination phase closed Saturday, Jan. 28. Each of the 369 sophomores, which are comprised of 367 colts and two fillies (Hoosier Philly [Into Mischief] and Julia Shining [Curlin]), were made eligible through a $600 payment and may compete in any leg of the Triple Crown series, pending other eligibility requirements.

The early nominations included 57 more horses (18.2%) than last year’s total of 312. Any additional horses can still be nominated via a late payment of $6,000 through Monday, Mar. 27.

A total of 125 individual trainers nominated runners, with Brad Cox leading all trainers by nominations with 38, followed by Todd Pletcher at 36, and a tie between Steve Asmussen and Kenny McPeek with 13 apiece. Chad Brown and Hideyuki Mori follow with 12 each. The latter is based in Japan as part of a 37-horse contingent nominated from that country, which is 16 more than last year’s previous record of 21.

Spendthrift Farm leads owners with 19 horses nominated, either as sole owners or as part of a partnership. Spendthrift’s Into Mischief has sired 17 of the nominees, followed by Curlin at 15, Curlin‘s son Good Magic at 14, and Triple Crown winner Justify at 14.

A total of 285 of the nominees were bred in Kentucky with other states represented being Florida (19), New York (19), California (5), Maryland (3), Pennsylvania (3), Oklahoma (2), and Texas (1). Japan contributes 24 of the nominees, with Ireland at four, Canada at three, and Great Britain at one.

Horses not currently assigned a trainer or horses under the care of any trainer suspended from competing in the 2023 Kentucky Derby have their trainer listed as “TBD.” For the Kentucky Derby, horses under the care of any suspended trainer or affiliates may be transferred to a non-suspended trainer and become eligible for earning Road to the Kentucky Derby points in future races if the transfer is complete by Feb. 28.

The 2023 Triple Crown opens May 6 with the 149th running of the GI Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, is followed by the 148th GI Preakness S. May 20 at Pimlico Race Course, and finishes with the 155th running of the GI Belmont S. June 10 at Belmont Park.

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