American Pharoah is favored to win Awards, but his rider Victor Espinoza has a tougher challenge

American Pharoah is favored to win Awards, but his rider Victor Espinoza has a tougher challenge

Skip Dickstein

Final Crown on Line for American Pharoah

Connections also contenders for awards.

American Pharoah  and his connections already have a Triple Crown, but another coronation is widely expected at the Jan. 16 Eclipse Awards.

American Pharoah’s effort to become the first Triple Crown winner in 37 years makes him a short-priced favorite to take Horse of the Year and champion 3-year-old male honors when the awards are announced.

Zayat Stables, his owner and breeder, along with trainer Bob Baffert, and jockey Victor Espinoza are also contenders for Eclipse Awards. Of those, Espinoza faces the biggest challenge after Javier Castellano broke his own single-season earnings record and won 17 grade I races.

The closest races are probably for champion 3-year-old filly, where all three nominees have claims, and champion turf female, in which Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner Tepin and Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (gr. IT) winner Stephanie's Kitten both made strong Eclipse Award cases during the year.

Live streaming of the awards ceremony at Gulfstream Park begins on Xpressbet.com at 6:30 p.m. ET.