To nobody’s surprise, the undefeated dual-classic winner Justify remained a unanimous first-place choice in the latest NTRA Top 3-Year-Old Poll, results of which were released today, the Monday following his hard-fought win in Saturday’s Preakness Stakes (G1). The Bob Baffert trainee, set to attempt a historic Triple Crown sweep in the June 9 Belmont Stakes, earned all 40 first-place votes in this week’s poll for a perfect score of 400 points.
Good Magic, the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) runner-up, did nothing to hinder his reputation in the Preakness, challenging Justify throughout before tiring to fourth. Voters kept him in the second spot with 344 points. Last year’s Eclipse Award-winning Champion 2-Year-Old Male will get a rest before launching a summer campaign.
Audible, third in the Kentucky Derby, remained third in the poll, despite bypassing the Preakness, with 321 points. His Belmont status is undecided, as his presence could hurt the Triple Crown chances of Justify and the horses share common ownership in partners WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and SF Racing.
The Preakness place and show runners, Bravazo and Tenfold, respectively, jumped into the top 10 this week, with Bravazo (224 points) moving to fourth and previously unranked Tenfold (66) taking the eighth slot.
The rest of the top 10 consisted of Longines Kentucky Oaks-winning filly Monomoy Girl (fifth; 149 points), Derby fifth My Boy Jack (sixth; 139), Derby 12th Bolt d’Oro (seventh; 120), Arkansas Derby winner and Derby 19th Magnum Moon (ninth; 65), and longshot Derby fourth Instilled Regard (64).
The NTRA Top 3-Year-Old Poll is the sport’s most comprehensive survey of experts ranking the generation of Thoroughbreds that includes all Triple Crown contenders. Every week eligible journalists and broadcasters cast votes for their top 10 horses, with points awarded on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. The Top 3-Year-Old Poll concludes June 11, after the Belmont Stakes.
In the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll for horses of all ages, Justify once again was the clear leader in first-place votes, with 25, versus 11 for West Coast, but lagged in overall points, 345 to 322.
The NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll concludes November 5 after the Breeders’ Cup.
The full results for both weekly NTRA Thoroughbred polls can be found on the NTRA website at: http://ntra.kinsta.cloud/ntra-top-thoroughbred-poll-may-21-2018.
Full accounting of top 10 votes, by voter: http://ntra.kinsta.cloud/wp-content/uploads/Polls-week17-by_voter-2018.pdf.