Tiz The Law stamped his class on the 152nd running of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday evening.
The Barclay Tagg-trained colt was smartly away from the stalls and soon in an ideal position under Manny Franco, in a race that this year forms the first leg of the American Triple Crown rather than last.
Run over nine furlongs rather than its traditional mile and a half, Franco oozed confidence throughout as he tracked Tap It To Win and was checking for dangers turning for home.
They were few and far between as the Constitution colt powered to the lead and quickly put the race to bed, with Franco punching the air in delight as he passed the post.
Tiz The Law becomes the first New York-bred to win the Belmont since Forester in 1882.
Tagg and owners Sackatoga Stable won the Kentucky Derby – and Preakness – in 2003 with Funny Cide and all roads lead to Churchill Downs on September 5 for Tiz The Law, who is now a short-priced favourite for the ‘run for the roses’.
Franco, winning his first Triple Crown race, told NBC Sports: “I’ve got the horse for the race (Kentucky Derby). I’m very happy for the opportunity the owner and trainer have given me. I’m in good hands, they know what they are doing.
“I’m not going to lie, I was a little bit (nervous), but at the same time I was confident as I know what I have under me and I am in good hands with Barclay, he’s done this with Funny Cide.”
Tagg said: “That’s what I’ve watched him do each time and I was delighted to see it.
“I’m just glad I lived long enough to have another horse like this. I’ve wanted to have a Belmont victory before I gave it up. We won’t change much (before the Derby), we’ll give him a little freshening and be right back with it.
“It’s all set up now.”