2013 Triple Crown late nomination $6000 fee due today

For all those with drams of their horses being a Kentucky Derby winner – get out your checkbooks. Did you mark your calendar for Saturday, March 23? Today is the deadline for the $6000 late nomination to be submitted by owners and trainers of 3-year-old thoroughbreds not yet eligible to compete in the horse racings 2013 Triple Crown races. The 2013 Triple Crown includes the 2013 Kentucky Derby, the 2013 Preakness Stakes and the 2013 Belmont Stakes.

Timing is all important – the $6000 fee deadline for late Triple Crown nominations is Saturday, March 23 at 11:59 p.m. (all times Eastern). This is the second nominating deadline. The $6,000 fee must accompany the nomination form submitted for each horse (the first nominating deadline was in January). The third and last next deadline raises the cost for nominations.

Horses not nominated to the Triple Crown during either the first or second nomination phase will have a final opportunity to become eligible for the series through a supplemental nomination process. Those horses can become eligible for one or all of the Triple Crown races with the payment of a supplemental nomination fee at the time of entry of any of the three races. A supplemental nominee is eligible to run in the remaining Triple Crown events after payment of the fee. A supplemental nomination at the time of entry to the Kentucky Derby requires a payment of $200,000. The supplemental fee is $100,000 if paid prior to either the Preakness or Belmont Stakes.

The 2013 Triple Crown will get underway on Saturday, May 4 with the 139th running of the 1 ¼-mile Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. The Preakness Stakes, the 1 3/16-mile second jewel, is set to be run for the 138th time on Saturday, May 18 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Md. The 145th running of the Belmont Stakes, the 1 ½-mile final jewel of the elusive series, is scheduled for Saturday, June 8 at Belmont Park, in Elmont, N.Y.

The Kentucky Derby field has been limited to 20 starters since 1975 and the horses that enter the starting gate for its 2013 renewal will be determined for the first time by points earned in the new “Road to the Kentucky Derby” eligibility system. The field for the Preakness is limited to 14 starters, while Belmont Stakes permits a maximum field of 16 horses.

A sweep of the three Triple Crown races – one of the most difficult feats in all of sports – has been accomplished on only 11 occasions. The roster of Triple Crown winners includes Sir Barton (1919), Gallant Fox (1930), Omaha (1935), War Admiral (1937), Whirlaway (1941), Count Fleet (1943), Assault (1946), Citation (1948), Secretariat (1973), Seattle Slew (1977) and Affirmed (1978).