Gainesway stallions are well represented among the 418 early nominees for the 2017 Triple Crown.
Three-time leading sire Tapit, who is responsible for two of the last three winners of the Belmont Stakes in Tonalist (2014) and Creator (2016), tops the list with 19 nominees, more than any other stallion. Among those are two of the five fillies on the list: Pretty City Dancer, John Oxley’s Grade 1-winning juvenile filly who was bred by Gainesway, and Don Alberto Stable’s Unique Bella, recent winner of the Grade 2 Santa Ynez Stakes in only her third start.
Tapit’s male sophomores include the Japan-bred Foggy Night, who will attempt to emulate Tapit’s Kentucky-bred son Lani, who last year traveled from Japan to participate in all three Triple Crown races, finishing third in the Belmont.
Gainesway’s young guns Tapizar and To Honor and Serve also have multiple representatives among the nominees. Tapizar, Tapit’s Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner, has six hopefuls while To Honor and Serve, a multiple Grade 1-winning son of Bernardini, has four.
Gainesway’s old guard is also represented: Afleet Alex, who won two-thirds of a Triple Crown himself has one nominee as does Belmont Stakes winner and Triple Crown spoiler Birdstone.