Skip to main content


NYRA news release

Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike showed focus and professionalism in his daily exercise over the main track Sunday at Belmont Park, the latest move in his preparations for the 2022 Belmont Stakes on Saturday.

Rich Strike schooled in the Belmont paddock before waiting patiently in the tunnel for his spin around Big Sandy. The Keen Ice chestnut took a few turns around the tunnel in the company of about a half-dozen other trainees and remained unfazed.

Regular exercise Gabriel Lagunes then guided Rich Strike to the center of the racetrack and asked him to gallop one lap around the 1 1/2-mile oval, a cutback from yesterday’s two-mile exercise. Rich Strike motored down the lane with his head down and fully focused on his work, digging into the fast dirt as he passed the finish and eased up just before the turn.

“We backed him up a half a mile today and tomorrow we’ll probably let him have another two-mile gallop,” said trainer Eric Reed. “He’s definitely enjoying himself and came back really perky. He’s appreciating everything.”

Yesterday (Monday) he ended up doing one lap around the track (one-and-a-half miles) and is seen in the picture enjoying himself and looking at the crowds. 

Rich Strike is expected to continue his daily routine of galloping and schooling up until the Belmont Stakes. He will likely school in the paddock during the races Thursday or Friday.  

Picture: Rich Strike working ahead of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday ( twitter).