The world awaited a delivery from Big Brown, but in a shocker it was 38-1 longshot Da’ Tara who won the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), taking the “Test of the Champion” in wire-to-wire fashion June 7 as the horse seeking to win the Triple Crown was eased past the wire.
Trainer Nick Zito spoiled a Triple Crown for the second time in five years. He also trained Birdstone , who beat Smarty Jones in the 2004 Belmont. And, like 2004 when Zito also ran third with Royal Assault, he was third this year with Anak Nakal, who dead-heated with Ready’s Echo. In second was Denis of Cork, who was 5 1/4 lengths in back of the winner.