Essential Quality among 326 horses nominated to Triple Crown

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Essential Quality is among 326 3-year-old thoroughbreds made eligible during the early nomination period to compete in this year’s Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont stakes. The colt won last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and the Eclipse Award as 2-year-old champion in 2020. Thirteen fillies were nominated to the Triple Crown races. Two-time Kentucky Derby winner Todd Pletcher was the leading trainer with 45 horses nominated. Six-time Derby winner Bob Baffert was second with 23 horses made eligible.