California Chrome arrives in New York for Belmont

Tue May 20, 2014 5:14pm EDT
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NEW YORK (Reuters) - California Chrome, American racing's new super horse, arrived in New York on Tuesday to begin his preparations for the Belmont Stakes.

The big chestnut colt made it to the Big Apple to the sort of reception normally reserved for pop stars and heads of state, with the paparazzi and television cameras gathered in force to record his grand entrance.

When the Triple Crown hopeful was led off the van that had transported him from Baltimore after his win in Saturday's Preakness Stakes, he stopped and flexed his giant muscles for the cameras before heading to the barn that will be his temporary home until the race on June 7.

"He likes to stand out here and pose," said his assistant trainer Alan Sherman.

"He loves to get his picture taken. He's a very inquisitive horse. He's always checking out what's going on around him."

California Chrome has been thrust into the spotlight after winning the first two legs of American horse racing's Triple Crown - the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes.

He now just needs to win the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes to complete the elusive treble that only 11 horses before him have managed to achieve and none since Affirmed since 1978.

For American race fans, the long wait has been unbearable and they see California Chrome as the perfect fairytale horse to break the drought.

In a sport where regally bred horses change hands for millions of dollars, California Chrome has defied the odds.   Continued...

May 20, 2014; Elmont, NY, USA;  California Chrome outside the barn upon arriving in advance of the Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports