I'll Have Another won the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico in Baltimore, Maryland.
The winner of the Kentucky Derby last time out, Doug O'Neill's colt confirmed his superiority over those reopposing with an impressive display in the second leg of America's Triple Crown.
Despite winning the Run For The Roses, the son of Flower Alley was sent off as second favourite with punters expecting Derby second, Bodemeister, to reverse the form with many feeling he had paid the price for setting too fast a pace at Churchill Downs.
Mike Smith eased Bob Baffert's charge to the front from gate nine and Bodemeister appeared to be doing everything easily out in front with a soft lead.
Mario Gutierrez had I'll Have Another settled in third but with the leader kicking off the turn into the straight and pinching a couple of lengths advantage the pair looked up against it.
Gutierrez, however, didn't panic and his mount gradually made clawed back the deficit to get his head in front on the wire, getting the verdict in a photo.
The pair finished clear of Creative Cause with Zetterholm in fourth.
"The great part of I'll Have Another is that any of us could have a horse like this," O'Neill said.
"He didn't cost a million bucks. But he's got the heart of a champion, the stride of a champion, and the mind of a champion.
"On to New York, baby!"
The last horse to have won the Triple Crown was Affirmed in 1978.
Bodemeister's trainer, Bob Baffert, said: "I felt really good about where he was.
"He looked like he was travelling nicely. Turning for home I really felt he would win.
"But the winner is a really good horse. I really can't complain.
"My horse ran his race. The California horses are really tough."
I'll Have Another, owned by Reddam Racing Llc, was a first runner in the Preakness Stakes for his trainer and will now bid for Triple Crown glory in the Belmont Stakes in New York on June 9.