Opossum Challenges California Chrome During Practice at Belmont

By Jared T. Miller

May 23, 2014 5:04pm
ht california chrome possum4 kab 140523 16x9 608 Opossum Challenges California Chrome During Practice at Belmont

California Chrome is pictured on the track with a possum at Belmont Park on May 23, 2014 in Elmont, N.Y. (Robert Sabo/New York Daily News)

If grace under pressure is the key to California Chrome’s racing success so far, he had it in spades during an impromptu race with an opossum Friday.

The Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner was training at Belmont Park when a opossum ran onto the track, keeping abreast of the Triple Crown hopeful.

“It didn’t faze him,” assistant trainer Alan Sherman said, according to the New York Daily News. “He better outrun a possum.”

Though it’s unclear who was ahead out of the stretch, Sherman said the unexpected competition didn’t affect California Chrome’s mile-and-three-quarter training run.

The horse’s confidence may come being based in Los Alamitos, Calif., where Sherman added that coyotes run around the horse’s home track on occasion.

The Belmont Stakes is June 7.

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