Union Rags wins Belmont Stakes
CHICAGO (MarketWatch) -- Union Rags squeezed through an opening along the rail in the final 100 yards to nip front-running Paynter by a head and win the 144th Belmont Stakes Saturday. Union Rags, who ran a troubled seventh in the Kentucky Derby as one of the favorites, avenged that defeat under a gutsy ride by jockey John Velazquez to haul in the winner's share of the $1 million purse. The horse went off at odds of 5-2, sharing favoritism with Dullahan, who was off the board in the 1 1/2-mile race. The race lost much of its luster on Friday when I'll Have Another was scratched, ending the three-year-old's bid to become the first Triple Crown winner in 34 years. A tendon injury forced the winner of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness into an early retirement. I'll Have Another did make an appearance on the Belmont track and in its winner's circle before the race, where the formal announcement of the retirement was made. I'll Have Another became the 12th horse since Affirmed last won the Triple Crown in 1978 to fail to finish the feat after winning the first two legs.