Ortiz had ridden Tapwrit to a disappointing fifth-place finish in the Blue Grass at Keeneland, finishing 11 1⁄2 lengths back as the 2-1 favorite.
It was a special moment in the career of Puerto Rican rider Jose Ortiz, too, and with his first victory he followed up the success of his brother, Irad, who won the US Classic 12 months ago aboard Creator.
Sentimental favorite Patch, a one-eyed horse, finished third in the field that was missing Kentucky Derby victor Always Dreaming and Preakness Stakes champion Cloud Computing. Five of the past nine Belmont winners did that.
This was the second straight year that a Triple Crown was not on the line in the Belmont, following two years of extraordinary handle numbers for the race when California Chrome was going for the Triple Crown in 2014 and American Pharoah took the title in 2015.
"It's a feeling I can't explain I'm very happy right now", jockey Jose Ortiz said guiding Tapwrit to victory at 5-1 odds in the 11-horse field. Patch, the one-eyed horse trained by Pletcher, was another 5 3/4 lengths back in third and paid $6.50 to show.
John Malone is chairman of Liberty Media Corp., whose holdings include Sirius XM radio and the Atlanta Braves.
"It looked like Irish War Cry still had something left, but the last sixteenth, he dug down deep".
"The horse was close to being able to compete but we ran out of time", trainer Kiyoshi Hagiwara said through a translator.
Rafael Nadal remporte son 10e Roland-Garros en balayant Stan Wawrinka — Phénoménal
Stan Wawrinka (32 ans et 75 jours) s'inscrit comme le plus vieux finaliste à Paris depuis Niki Pilic en 1973. En défense, ses jambes lui ont permis de mettre en échec le jeu ultra agressif du Suisse en début de match.
Japanese horse Epicharis was a morning scratching due to a hoof injury, missing out on a chance to secure a $1 million bonus that would have gone to the connections of the colt had he won. Always Dreaming and Preakness victor Cloud Computing both skipped the race.
"It actually wasn't our plan to be on the lead", said Irish War Cry trainer Graham Motion.
"We kind of hoped that somebody else would go for it, but he had to go to Plan B and Rajiv did a great job". Tapwrit's stablemate, Patch, came in a distant third.
By midway through the final turn, anyone who wasn't wishing they had bet a bundle on the 7-2 favorite should have been. Up front, Irish War Cry put away Meantime and appeared a likely victor at the top of Belmont's long stretch.
That's when Tapwrit took up the chase in earnest.
This year, the classic race's field seemed to open wide.
Gormley finished fourth, followed by Senior Investment, Twisted Tom, Lookin At Lee, Meantime, J Boys Echo and Multiplier.
Only 10 horses finished after long shot Hollywood Handsome was pulled up after breaking his irons around the first turn. He guided the colt to the outside until he could be stopped. "I nearly went down".
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