ELMONT, N.Y. (CNN) – As he thundered across the line to win the coveted Triple Crown, Justify’s value skyrocketed to about $60 million with the potential for more. The 3-year-old chestnut colt became the 13th horse ever to win the Triple Crown of the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes after a dominant victory at Belmont Park in New York on Saturday.
Forbes has estimated that, once retired, Justify could demand an initial $100,000 stud fee — giving him a $60 million value based solely on breeding fees if he were to cover 150 mares per breeding season for four years. Depending on the racing performances of his offspring, this value could rise even higher.
“The day the horse leaves the racecourse is the end of his career and his future is entirely determined by the success of his progeny,” said Sam Bullard, director of stallions at Dalham Hall Stud in Newmarket.
Justify has won all six races that he has run this year — Seattle Slew was the only other undefeated horse to win the Triple Crown in 1977. It’s an impressive feat for a horse that only started racing 113 days ago and was originally purchased for just $500,000.
Justify’s trainer, Bob Baffert, said that the win was meant to be. “I wanted to see that horse’s name up there [with the other greats] because we know he was brilliant from day one,” he told reporters. Baffert has trained more winners in Triple Crown races (15) than anyone — he also trained 2015 Triple Crown champion American Pharoah.
Justify will travel from Belmont Park to Churchill Downs in Kentucky to get a “week or so” off before owners decide what’s next for the undefeated horse.
(© Copyright 2018 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)